Thursday, September 22, 2016

Avocado Brownies

Meal Plan Monday #30


I had a large, ripe Florida avocado on hand...knowing that we would be gone for a few days, I was trying to think of something to make with it...brownies would make a great snack for our weekend trip so off I go in search of a recipe using ingredients on hand. A search online & a search of the pantry resulted in an adaptation from a blog, Friday Night is Cake!



Avocado Brownies


1 cup chocolate, melted (I used 1/2 bittersweet & 1/2 semi-sweet)
2 Hass avocados or 1 lg. Florida avocado
1 cup organic sugar or coconut sugar
4 eggs
1 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tsp. Vanilla extract (I always use my homemade extract using vodka)
1/4 tsp. Salt

Preheat oven to 350, or 325 convection. Line a 9" square pan with foil & spray with cooking spray.

Cream avocado & sugar in medium mixing bowl until fluffy. Add eggs, ground almonds, cocoa powder, extract, salt & cooled chocolate; mix until thoroughly combined. Spread into pan & bake until toothpick comes out almost clean. Cool in pan on wire rack, cut in squares when cool. Store covered in fridge. This will make 16 very moist & tasty brownies. Enjoy!

BTW, you will never know they have avocado in them & that they are healthier than traditional brownies. They definitely don't lack in flavor!

Sunday, August 28, 2016

September 2016 Newsletter

SEPTEMBER 2016 NEWSLETTER

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

What Do I Want?
I want you to be happy...happiest with me!
I want to be all the needs in your life!
I want to fill your heart with feelings of wonder...and fulfillment!
I want you to be full of courage and hope...looking forward to each day!
I want you to have the type of friendship that is a treasure...the friendship of trust and anticipation!
Anticipation of spending our lives together as one...forever friends!
To find the kind of love that is beautiful forever...time together or apart!
I wish you contentment: the sweet, quiet, inner kind that
comes around and never goes away...that will awaken you each morning!
Of all the things I'll be wanting and wishing for, wherever I am
and whatever I do...you will be the most intricate part!
There will never be a day in my life when I won't be wishing I were with you...whether it's in your thoughts, your heart or your arms!
I want us to be happy...happiest with one another!

Paula
July 26, 2010




FOOD FOR FOOTBALL/TAILGATING:

Italian Beef Sandwiches

1 (3 to 4 1/2 lbs) beef roast, trimmed
1 can (12 ounces) beer (you choose the flavor), or use 1 1/2 cups beef broth
1 envelope dry Italian salad dressing mix
1 large onion, chopped
1 - 12-oz. jar sliced Pepperoncini peppers, with the liquid
Hard Rolls, Ciabatta Rolls, French Bread, etc.
Preparation:
Pour beer or beef broth into crock pot. Drain liquid from pepperoncini into crockpot. Stir in the salad dressing mix until well-blended. Place about half of the peppers in the crockpot. Add chopped onions. Trim fat from the roast; place in crock pot on top of peppers & onions. Top roast with remaining peppers. Cook Italian beef on low 8 to 10 hours Remove cooked roast from crockpot; cool slightly. While still warm, pull roast with two forks to shred. Toast split rolls, add 2 slices Provolone cheese. Spread with Dijon or Spicy Mustard. To serve, ladle small amount of warm liquid from crock over split roll or bread, top with shredded beef, then follow with more beef liquid as desired. Serve with additional peppers on the side. Instead of adding additional broth to the sandwich, I serve it on the side for dipping.
Serves 12 to 16
Serve with forks and a stack of napkins.

Note: I serve the broth on the side as an au jus for dipping!

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Rose & Ivy Southern Pecan Cheese Bake
1/2 cup mayonnaise
One 8 oz pack cream cheese
One cup grated cheddar cheese
2 green onions (chopped)
6 Ritz crackers (crushed)
8 slices bacon (cooked and crumbled)
1/2 cup any Rose & Ivy Southern Pecan Pepper Glaze/Jelly
Mix mayonnaise, cream cheese and onions in greased quiche or pie plate. Top with
crackers and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and top with bacon.
Drizzle Rose & Ivy Southern Pecan Pepper Glaze or Jelly over all and serve with crackers.

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Italian Joe's on Ciabatta Bread

 This was SO good that I had to share!
Italian Joe's
adapted from Cuisine at Home
recipe shown with my changes/additions

1 lb. Mild Italian Sausage, casings removed
2-1/2 lb. ground chuck
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cups diced red onion
2 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 cup diced red or yellow bell pepper
1/2 cup shredded carrot
1/2 cup diced celery
2 Tbsp. tomato paste (I used sun-dreid tomato paste in the tube)
2 (15 oz.) cans tomato puree (I used Hunt's)
1 (28 oz.) can petite diced tomatoes (I used Hunt's)
4 tsp. dried oregano
2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
1/2 cup Cabernet Sauvignon
3 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp. dark brown sugar
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. fresh ground black pepper

For serving:
Ciabatta Bread
Sliced Provolone Cheese
Deli Sliced Pepperocini

Brown sausage and beef in large pan over medium heat, breaking up any large chunks. Drain well.
Add olive oil to pan. Add onions, peppers, carrots, celery, tomato paste and garlic. Saute 10 minutes.
Stir in tomatoes, tomato puree, balsamic vinegar, wine, brown sugar, seasonings and browned/drained meat.
Bring to boil. Reduce to simmer and cook for 30 minutes.

Heat Ciabatta bread in microwave for 15 seconds. Split. Topping each side with a slice of provolone. Top one side with
hot Italian Joe mixture and spoonful of deli sliced pepperocini. Place ciabatta top on and serve. ENJOY!

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Jackie's Stuffed Jalapeños

here is the recipe for the stuffed jalapenos.....

20 jalapenos
1 lb. sausage
1 cup Parmesan Reggiano cheese
1- 8 ounce pkg. cream cheese.

Cook sausage until no longer pink. (I use Jimmy Dean, original.)

After washing peppers, cut them in half and clean out seeds. (I use a grapefruit spoon and it makes it so easy.)
By he time the peppers are all cleaned, the sausage will have cooled.

Mix sausage with cream cheese (room temp), and Parmesan cheese, then fill peppers.

Bake at 350 deg. for 20 min.

I cut the recipe in half unless I'm making for a larger group. For my family, who like things a little hot, I put some of the seeds in the filling, but if making for a group, I divide the filling in half and just put the seeds in half the filling.  

We absolutely love these!
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I have  made many variations with Blueberry or Raisin bread. Also can add a Caramel Rum Sauce! Thanks for the recipe, Moe! 
Choco-licious Bread Pudding Muffins
from Marlene aka Moe

Ingredients:
1-3/4 cups of lowfat milk
3 large egg whites or 2 eggs, beaten
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
6 cups cubed (1/2-inch) cinnamon swirl or egg bread
1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate pieces
12 cup muffin pan
Directions:Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine milk, egg whites, sugar and vanilla; mix well. Stir in bread cubes and chocolate chips; mix well. Let stand at room temperature 10 minutes. Spoon mixture into 12 paper-lined muffin cups. Bake for 30 minutes or until puffed and set. Serve warm, at room temperature or chilled. The snacks may be cooled, placed in an air-tight container and frozen up to one month before serving. Makes 12 servings
Nutrition facts per serving: 150 calories; 4g fat; 2g saturated fat; 1mg cholesterol; 109mg sodium; 27g carbohydrates; 4g protein

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Chicken Verona & Vodka Sauce

Find it here also...

Monday Meal Plan #28


Some old favorites revisited...

Having made the Chicken Verona for a catering several years ago, it became a favorite! Great served with a dipping sauce or on its own as an entree with Crash potatoes & veggie of choice.

The Vodka Sauce adds a finishing touch to  Shrimp/Andouille Tower! Sauté grit cakes or polenta cakes until golden,
On a bed of spinach, place one cake, top with sautéed shrimp (seasoned with Old Bay) & cooked slices of andouille. Repeat layers of grit cakes, shrimp & sausage. Spoon vodka sauce over & garnish with fresh snipped chives.




Chicken Verona

Ingredients

  • cup dry breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese grated
  • 1/4 cup Parsley - fresh chopped
  • tsp salt, optional
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. dry mustard 
  • 3/4 stick melted butter or margarine
  • clove garlic (large), minced
  • chicken breasts, boneless and skinless, cut into strips, about 4 per breast

Instructions

Mix breadcrumbs, cheese, mustard, parsley, salt and pepper and spread on paper plate or similar to dip/bread chicken breasts.
Melt butter in a small frying pan and mix in garlic.
Dip each chicken breast in butter mixture and dredge in breadcrumb mixture.
Place in a single layer in a shallow baking pan.
Pour remaining butter and breadcrumbs over chicken.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 30-35 minutes.

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VODKA SAUCE

Ingredients








In a skillet over medium heat, saute onion in butter until slightly brown and soft. Pour in vodka and let cook for 10 minutes. Mix in crushed tomatoes, parsley, oregano & garlic and cook for 20minutes. Pour in heavy cream and cook for another 20 minutes. 


Saturday, August 20, 2016

Eggs Benedict...

often requested by Rick as this is his all time favorite breakfast! So, that was on the menu this morning!

Meal Plan Monday ... #26


What you will need:

Thomas Nooks & Crannies English Muffins

Canadian Bacon

Eggs for poaching in boiling water with 1 tsp. Distilled white vinegar

Blender Hollandaise Sauce (recipe follows)

I toast split English muffins in my toaster oven in lieu of my toaster as they toast more uniformly.

I sauté Canadian bacon slices in small amount of butter just to heat through.

Using about an inch of water with vinegar added, poach eggs about 2-1/2 to 3 minutes, remove with a slotted spoon.



Blender Hollandaise Sauce

In a 4 cup glass measuring cup, whisk together:

5 egg yolks
1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. Lemon juice
1/4 tsp. White pepper

Melt 1/2 cup butter in a glass measuring cup in microwave. While hot, drizzle into egg yolk mixture with blender running. I use my immersion blender & blend while adding the butter.

On serving plate, place split toasted English muffin.
Top each half with a slice of Canadian Bacon.
A poached egg on each muffin half.
Ladle 1/4 cup Hollandaise sauce over each muffin.
May be garnished with fresh snipped parsley or chives.

Enjoy!







Saturday, August 13, 2016

Crab Cakes, My Way

Meal Plan Monday #25


Crab Cakes, My Way
Paula Smith

Ingredients
4-6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1-1/2 cup small diced red onion (1 small onion)
1-1/2 cup small diced celery (3 stalks)
1-1/2 cup small diced red bell pepper (1 small pepper)

1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley or 2 tbsp. Dry parsley flakes
2tablespoon capers, drained
1 tsp. hot pepper sauce (recommended: Tabasco)
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp.  crab boil seasoning (recommended: Old Bay)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 pounds lump crabmeat, drained and picked to remove shells
1-1/2 cup plain dry bread crumbs or panko bread crumbs
1 cup  mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
6 large eggs, lightly beaten
For frying:
Flour for dusting
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup olive oil
Directions
Place the 4 tablespoons butter, 
 onion, celery, red and yellow bell peppers, parsley, capers, hot pepper sauce, Worcestershire sauce, crab boil seasoning, salt, and pepper in a large saute pan over medium-low heat and cook until the vegetables are soft, approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature. In a large bowl, break the lump crabmeat into small pieces and toss with the bread crumbs, mayonnaise, mustard, and eggs. Add the cooked mixture and mix well. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Shape into bite-sized crab cakes. I use  3 oz. scoop and scoop onto parchment lined baking sheet, freeze, store for later use.
For frying:
Heat butter and olive oil for frying over medium heat in a large saute pan. Lightly dust crab cakes with flour.  Add the crab cakes and fry for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, until browned. Drain on paper towels; keep them warm in a 250 degree oven and serve hot.
For baking:
I thaw in fridge a few hours, dust with flour, place on buttered parchment lined baking sheet. Spray with non aerosol butter or olive oil. Bake in preheated 350 oven for 15 minutes until golden.
Can be coated with flour, deep fried until golden. Microwave for 45 seconds to make sure they are cooked through.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

AUGUST 2016 NEWSLETTER

August 2016 Newsletter
FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Friends...

You happen upon them when least expected...
friends from days gone by, sometime since you've seen them...
Yet that bond of friendship is rekindled in a moment...
Cherished memories recalled...some happy times, others trying
times that you have been through together.
Old friends and new friends are necessary in life...
They are the family we choose.

Paula 2011





RECIPES:

Monterey  Chicken Breasts
4 large B/S chicken breasts
1/4 cup BBQ sauce (I used KC Masterpiece Original)
1/2 small red onion, sliced or julienned
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1 can Rotel tomatoes, undrained (I used Original)
1 cup shredded triple cheddar cheese
1/3 cup chopped green onions
Rinse, pat dry chicken breasts & place in glass baking dish. Spread BBQ sauce over top of each piece. Top with onion, cumin & chili powder. Pour tomatoes over the top. Bake, uncovered in 350 oven for 45-50 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Top with shredded cheese & green onions. Cover with foil & let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Original recipe called for can of diced tomatoes & can of green chiles. No red onion, cumin or chili powder. Baking 45 minutes, and additional 15 minutes after adding cheese and green onions.

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 2

  • Optional: Add other veggies of your choice...cauliflower, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, etc. 
  • Season 1 lb. peeled, deveined & tail on shrimp, toss with mixture last 10 minutes of cooking. 
  • Instructions:


AUGUST 2016 NEWSLETTER

August 2016 Newsletter
FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Friends...

You happen upon them when least expected...
friends from days gone by, sometime since you've seen them...
Yet that bond of friendship is rekindled in a moment...
Cherished memories recalled...some happy times, others trying
times that you have been through together.
Old friends and new friends are necessary in life...
They are the family we choose.

Paula 2011





RECIPES:

Monterey  Chicken Breasts
4 large B/S chicken breasts
1/4 cup BBQ sauce (I used KC Masterpiece Original)
1/2 small red onion, sliced or julienned
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1 can Rotel tomatoes, undrained (I used Original)
1 cup shredded triple cheddar cheese
1/3 cup chopped green onions
Rinse, pat dry chicken breasts & place in glass baking dish. Spread BBQ sauce over top of each piece. Top with onion, cumin & chili powder. Pour tomatoes over the top. Bake, uncovered in 350 oven for 45-50 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Top with shredded cheese & green onions. Cover with foil & let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Original recipe called for can of diced tomatoes & can of green chiles. No red onion, cumin or chili powder. Baking 45 minutes, and additional 15 minutes after adding cheese and green onions.

***********************************



 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 2

  • Optional: Add other veggies of your choice...cauliflower, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, etc. 
  • Season 1 lb. peeled, deveined & tail on shrimp, toss with mixture last 10 minutes of cooking. 
  • Instructions: