all sorts of recipes, from me to you

all sorts of recipes, from me to you…

Monday, December 26, 2011

Happy New Year to YOU!









May you all have a 
fantastic 2012 that is filled with:  

Good Health

Joy

Success
and 

Peace!


Happy New Year!!!

Cheers, 




Friday, December 23, 2011

Cranberry-Maple Syrup and Merry Christmas!





Your pancakes will really be perfect on Christmas morning when drizzled with this mouthwatering cranberry-maple syrup! 

This syrup is a cross between a colorful jam and viscous syrup.  Crushed cranberries provide an interesting texture with a tart flavor, mingling with the sweet sticky maple syrup.  Four ingredients are all it takes.  Cook the cranberries in the maple syrup, until they pop, then crush the cranberries with a potato masher.   The aroma as it cooks is mouthwatering. 

I saw this recipe somewhere on the internet a while back, but don’t remember where.  It’s a great recipe ~ so try topping your waffles or pancakes with this fruity syrup!





Cranberry-Maple Syrup

Ingredients:

1 cup pure maple syrup
1 cup fresh cranberries
½ teaspoon orange zest
1 tablespoon butter

Method:

In a saucepan over medium-high heat, bring syrup, cranberries and orange zest to a boil.
Reduce heat, and simmer, until the cranberries have popped, about 3 minutes.
Remove from heat and crush cranberries with a potato masher or spoon.
Add butter and stir until dissolved.
Serve warm
Keeps well refrigerated in a covered container.


By the way, it makes a great little homemade gift for your family and friends!




Here’s wishing all of you and your loved ones a blessed Merry Christmas!





A little smile
A word of cheer
A bit of love from someone near,
A little gift from one held dear,
Best wishes for the coming year…
These make a Merry Christmas!

John Greenleaf Whittier





Hugs to you all,
Pam


Be sure to visit my friend, Linda’s blog @My Kind of Cooking for great tips and recipes. 

Monday, December 19, 2011

Fried Apples My Way


Oooops!  Forgot to take pic after cooking!



There is a bushel full of theories about the origin of apples, but we all remember the story of John Chapman, or Johnny Appleseed as the legend goes, who was born in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1774 and died in Ft. Wayne, Indiana in March, 1845. 

He was liked for his kind, generous ways and for planting apple seeds along his travels around the country ~ over a 50 year period, buying and selling land and developing thousands of productive apple trees.  His dream was to produce so many apples that no one would ever go hungry.  


                                           Johnny Appleseed, postcard, 1972


I’ve always been crazy about apples ~ especially, baked apples, until I made fried apples; they’re even better!  Fried apples are not quite apple pie but a close second.  Perhaps, most folks think of fried apples as a dessert; but in my mind, it's a side dish.  This is a simple, seasonal food that is packed with flavor.

Cook the apples just until they are fork tender.  They can quickly surrender and turn to mush, so watch them closely.  It’s as easy as apple pie!



Fried Apples

Ingredients:

4 apples:  2 Granny Smith and 2 Honeycrisp
½ teaspoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons brown sugar (I use Splenda)
Dash salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
Dash nutmeg

Method:

Melt butter in skillet.
Drizzle lemon juice over apples.
Cover and cook about 15-20 minutes or until tender.  (Watch closely; they can turn to mush quickly).
Sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg, and toss.
Serve warm or room temperature, maybe with a dollop of whipped cream.


Be sure to take time to check out my friend, Linda’s, great blog @ My Kind of Cooking for helpful tips and yummy recipes.






Friday, December 16, 2011

Mom’s Spinach Cakes and Dad’s Gardening





Mom must’ve really liked spinach as there are quite a few spinach recipes in her recipe box, but I don’t remember it being served much at suppertime when I was a kid. 

Surely, she served it though, because Dad was one for eating healthy vegetables, especially dark green ones, and he had several large gardens to provide them.  Dad loved trying something new ~ different varieties of vegetables in his gardens and had quite the compost piles too.  Have you ever seen steam rising from a cooking pile of compost?

Anyway, when I came across this spinach recipe of Mom’s, I had to try it.  It contains one teaspoon of Accent----what is it and do they even make it anymore?  Wait until you see what else is in the recipe ~ I’m sure it’s a recipe that Paula Deen would endorse.  It’s filled with BUTTER!!!  That’s the way it was back then---butter was a wonderful thing and it still is for me, but to a lesser degree. 

Mom formed them into cakes; I cut back on the butter and form them into balls.  They’re great for a side dish and as an appetizer also during this time of year.   What’s more, they can be prepared and frozen a week or two in advance to minimize holiday preparations.  These little spinach bundles are delicious; no matter if they’re balls or cakes!

Here’s Mom’s recipe:


Mom’s Spinach Cakes

Ingredients:

1 pound chopped spinach, cooked and drained
2 cups Pepperidge Farm Stuffing Mix
1 onion, chopped
1¼ sticks butter, melted
½ cup Parmesan cheese
½ teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon Accent (I omitted it because I don’t even know what it is!)

Method:

Slightly cook spinach and drain well.
Mix all ingredients together.
Take up mixture with an ice cream scoop (I used my hands to form the mixture) and round into patties.  (I kept them in a ball shape.)
Put on cookie sheet and place in refrigerator until ready to bake.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
These may be made ahead and frozen.  If solidly frozen, allow a little longer to baking time.
Makes 8-10 spinach cakes or balls


It’s a tasty way to eat your spinach!


Be sure to visit my friend, Linda’s blog @
My Kind of Cooking
 for great tips and recipes. 






Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Corn-in-a-cup From Stephen’s Unorthodox Cookbook


Wednesday morning Haiku for you…


claims he eats like wren

while cooks spam from can superb

and that’s no bird seed!




Before Google
After Google



I’m a little late with this, and had intended on posting it in November but; if you follow my blog, you will remember it was a hectic time at our house then. 

Stephen was inspired to make corn-in-a-cup after having it at Jack-n-Grill in Denver.  I love corn and the name intrigued me, and then I realized that he really didn’t give measurements or directions for it.   I took the plunge, anyway, and whipped the dish together quickly and snapped a couple of photos.  How hard could cooking it be?   A cup of corn, some chile powder, hot sauce and parmesan, easy, easy and actually, pretty good. 

Then, I had second thoughts about it:

If you’re acquainted with Stephen’s blog, The Obsessive Chef, you’re aware of his colorful, entertaining writing and his cookbook is no different.  “Unorthodox” is the word that comes to mind!  I agree with Stephen though, it’s good to “think outside the box” when cooking and exact measurements aren’t needed most of the time, unless you are dealing with baked goods. 

What I’m trying to say is --- this is not your standard cookbook!  Stephen is a little long-winded and rants too; for example:  about the proper temperature for cooked pork.  He stated a blogger roasted herb-crusted pork loin to 165 degrees.  I am “old school” with my mother and Grandma lecturing me about cooking pork until no longer pink (Beware the danger of trichinosis ruining your intestines!)  Since that’s actually no longer a danger, Stephen says, the FDA lowered the temperature to 145 degrees.  I eat beef, as in a roast like prime rib, and hamburgers, and all steaks only until “warm” with the “bloody red juices” flowing; however, on the packaging for the pork loin roasts I buy, it says cook until thermometer reaches 160, which is what I do; we refuse to eat “pink” pork in this house.

Now, back to the corn and my second thoughts; I decided to Google “Jack-n-Grill” for the recipe.  The photo of it there looked nothing like my first attempt, so I made it again with the parmesan cheese sprinkled over the top, as in their photo.  It really made little difference taste wise, other than a tad more parmesan flavor, but I liked the texture better as the cheese wasn’t thoroughly melted in the corn.  In the end, Stephen’s right ~ cook it your way; experiment and have fun cooking!


Anyway, I think Stephen is a unique individual ~ he makes me laugh and sometimes he ticks me off too!   That’s what’s so great about him, you just never know!  You may not agree with everything he says, but you will have many laughs and maybe a rant or two yourself, if you read the Obsessive Chef’s cookbook, ACook’s Book for Cooks.   It’s filled with delicious creative recipes like this corn dish and like this lima bean dish and it may, or may not have a list of ingredients with exact measurements!


Here’s Stephen’s corn recipe:

Corn-in-a cup

You will need (per serving):

1 cup thawed frozen corn kernels or 1 cup canned, drained and rinsed corn kernels
1 Tbs butter
Hot sauce to taste
Chile powder to taste
Salt to taste
Parmesan cheese to taste

Melt the butter in a saucepan and add the corn.  Add the other ingredients and heat through.  The corn doesn’t really need to be “cooked,” just made hot.


I’ve been a “blogger friend” of Stephen’s for a long while so, believe me, you will be entertained with his remarkable cookbook ~ his wit and his “spicy” outlook on cooking and life in general!

And try this corn ~ it’s great!




Be sure to visit my friend, Linda’s blog @My Kind of Cooking for great tips, recipes. 







Monday, December 12, 2011

Crispy Sesame Chicken





Sesame seeds on oven-fried chicken?  Crispy chicken without a grease-filled iron skillet? 

This recipe got my attention, when I saw it in my America’s Best Recipes cookbook, and I had to try it!  The recipe includes grated Parmesan cheese and dry breadcrumbs, along with sesame seeds for the breading.  Use skinless chicken and it’s even healthier.

I can tell you this chicken ROCKED!   It turned out very crispy and juicy and smacked of good flavors.  Just try it --- I bet you will think so also!



Crispy Sesame Chicken

Ingredients:

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ cup fine, dry breadcrumbs
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 teaspoon pepper
1 (3 to 3½-pound) fryer chicken, cut up, skinless
¼ cup butter, melted

Method:

Combine first 3 ingredients in a small bowl and stir well.
Dip chicken in butter.
Dredge in breadcrumb mixture.
Place in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish.
Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until done.
4-6 servings


Yum!  Tender and crispy too!


Be sure to visit my friend, Linda’s blog @My Kind of Cooking for great tips, recipes. 







Friday, December 9, 2011

Baked Salmon with Mushrooms and Garlic





I really like salmon ~ whether it’s straight out of the can or fresh and grilled or baked.  But, I’ve never combined it with mushrooms until now and it definitely won’t be the last time. 

The origin of the recipe is a mystery to me; one of those in my “must try” file.  Whatever, it’s delicious!  The blend of ingredients compliments the salmon excellently.   It’s a tasty salmon dish that goes great with a helping of rice and broccoli, for a good side dish!


Baked Salmon with Mushrooms and Garlic

Ingredients:

1 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 pound salmon filets
Salt and seasoned pepper, to taste
4 tablespoons Italian breadcrumbs
¼ cup onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons finely minced parsley
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Lemon wedges for garnish, optional

Method:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Place mushrooms in baking dish that is sprayed with a cooking spray.
Salt and pepper salmon filets and layer over mushrooms.
Combine breadcrumbs, onion, garlic and parsley.
Sprinkle over filets.
Stir together olive oil and lemon juice.
Slowly drizzle over filets.
Bake for about 25 minutes or until tender and breadcrumbs are lightly browned.
Remove filets to serving platter and spoon mushrooms over the top.
Serve with lemon wedges.


I hope you try this and like it as much as I do!



Take time to check out my friend, Linda, and her great blog @ My Kind of Cooking for helpful tips and yummy recipes!





Monday, December 5, 2011

WOO HOO!!! I’m Soooo Happy to Be Back!





I’ve missed all of you, and thought of you often!  I have been on the internet very little since late October and here is the reason why… 

Close to dinner time on October 25th, Bill told me to call the paramedics because he was having difficulty breathing.  During his hospital stays, he had several lung and heart procedures; was diagnosed with pericarditis, resulting in pericardial window surgery.  He is very thankful as well as happy ~ and I am too ~ to say that all test results were good and he is recovering well.  I knew 4 days ago he was returning to his usual self when his sense of humor returned!

And now that I’m back, I’ve got a tasty Chicken Marsala recipe for you.  I really like Italian dishes, and the depth of flavor in this one will surely have you repeating the recipe many times.  This is a lighter version of Chicken Marsala, without the usual ingredients of butter, flour and cream.

It’s a simple Marsala sauce:  reducing Marsala wine to a thin syrup with mushrooms and braising the chicken breasts in the sauce for a delicious savory dish.  It’s a fairly quick dish that is tender and filled with flavor!  I hope you try it!






Chicken Marsala

Ingredients:

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound mushrooms, fresh, sliced
2 teaspoons garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon oregano
¾ cup Marsala wine
¼ cup low-sodium chicken broth or water
2 teaspoons chicken base, low-sodium

Method:

Heat oil in skillet.
Place chicken in skillet and brown on both sides.
Remove chicken from skillet and set aside.
Add mushrooms, garlic powder, onion powder and oregano.
Sauté for 3 minutes.
Add wine, broth and chicken base to skillet.
Stir well to blend.
Simmer for 15 minutes.
Return chicken to skillet.
Spoon sauce over chicken.
Cover and cook until temperature reaches 165 degrees.
Pour mushrooms and sauce over chicken and serve with pasta, rice or garlic mashed potatoes.


ENJOY!!!



Take time to check out my friend, Linda, and her great blog @ My Kind of Cooking for helpful tips and yummy recipes!