Thursday, June 30, 2011

Summer Salad

This salad tastes of all thing summer. It's healthy, flavorful, and incredibly delicious.

Image and recipe from here
1 cup nectarine
1 cup avocado
1 mango
1/2 cup blueberries
1 cup sweet corn off the cob, raw
1 cucumber
1 tomato, I used a lemon boy
3-4 slices of bacon, I used turkey bacon
or cubes of grilled chicken
(I even think black beans would be good added, but I didn't do that)

Mix together:
3 TBS Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 1/2 TBS Balsamic Vinigar
Squeeze of honey or apricot nectar
Dash of black pepper and garlic salt

Pour over top of salad and eat to your hearts content.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Apple Pie

This is the recipe for everyone's favorite apple pie. I got the recipe from my BYU Food Prep class and have been using it ever since.

Here's the crust everyone loves:
Yield: 2 single crust pie shells or 1 double crust pie

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 t. salt
1 cup shortening
Ice water, enough to make soft dough (I think I usually use between 1/4-1/2 cup)

Combine flour and salt. Cut in shortening to the size of peas. Gradually add ice water to form a soft dough. Divide into two disks and wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 10 minutes. Shape as desired. Bake single crust pie shells at 400-degrees. Bake double crust pie according to filling instructions.

Fresh Apple Pie filling (This is all tenuous because I don't really follow this. I kind of just make up the filling myself because I like a more caramelish filling, so I sprinkle in more brown sugar than white sugar and usually add more apple pie spice):

3 1/2 cups blanched, fresh apples is 1/4 inch slices
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/8 t. nutmeg
3 T. cornstarch, or 6 T. flour
1/2 cup cold water
1/2 cup apple juice
2 T. lemon juice

Peel, core and slice apples into medium bowl. The recipe says to cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high for 5 minutes, or until apples are tender. Then it says to combine dry ingredients in a medium saucepan and then add the wet ingredients until thick. But I usually just stir all the ingredients in a big pan over the stove and cook over medium heat until the apples are tender (but not too soft) and the filling is thick and bubbly and to my liking. Then pour the filling into the pie crust and seal the edges well. I never have much luck making it look very pretty, but it hasn't stopped anyone from eating it. Prick the top and decorate as desired. Brush lightly with milk, avoiding crimped edges, and sprinkle lightly with coarse sugar (I usually don't do this, because who owns coarse sugar?). Bake at 400-degrees for 20 minutes, reduce heat to 350 and bake 30-40 minutes or until crust is golden brown.

Serve with vanilla ice cream and enjoy!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

French Toast Casserole with Blueberries

I found this recipe in the S.L. Tribune, but since it served 8 & Dad was out of town & your Dad doen't like blueberries & I wanted to try it...I cut the recipe so that it'll serve 2 people, I added more blueberries and the vanilla.  It was delicious served with vanilla yogurt and a little bit of maple syrup. Yea, breakfast is ready for tomorrow, I'll just heat it up in the microwave.

3 slices of bread (I used whole wheat bread)
4 oz. light cream cheese
1/2 c. milk
3 eggs
1/2 c. blueberries
3 T. maple syrup (I used lite syrup)
1/2 tsp. vanilla  (optional)
cinnamon (also optional)
Vanilla yogurt (Yoplait or a berry flavored kind)

Cut the bread into 1" cubes.  Place half the cubes in a buttered loaf pan.  Cut cream cheese into 1/2" cubes and layer on top of the bread.  Sprinkle the blueberries on top of the mixture.  Add the rest of the bread cubes.  Whip up the eggs, milk and the syrup.  Pour on top of the bread.  Cover with foil and leave in your refrigerator for at least 8 hours or overnight. A half hour before cooking, remove from the refrigerator.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes with the foil on.  Remove the foil and bake an additional 20 - 25 minutes until the middle is done and the bread is golden brown. 

Put this together the night before you want to serve it for breakfast....first one up, takes it from the refrigerator.  Bake and enjoy this warm with a little vanilla yogurt and a drizzle of maple syrup.  It really was good.  The recipe said you could also use peaches or any other fruit.  ENJOY!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Goodness on a Stick

So this isn't a recipe, obviously, but I just tried one and wanted to share how good it was.

I've been trying to be better at eating sweets lately (and I've done really well so far, for me), but it's summertime and this one was calling my name today.

It's like a frozen caramello with ice cream in between. Heaven!


Thursday, June 23, 2011

Crescent Cristo Sandwiches

I was asking mom for this recipe today. I haven't really thought about these in awhile, but I LOVE them. I think they make a good summer dinner, too.

Recipe from Pillsbury Best of the Bakeoff

Total time: 45 minutes
Serves: 8

2 (8-oz) cans refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons honey
6 oz. thinly sliced smoked cooked turkey breast
6 oz. medium sliced Muenster cheese
6 oz. thinly sliced cooked ham
1/3 to ½ cup red raspberry preserves

2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
Heat oven to 375°F. Separate or cut dough into 4 long rectangles. Place rectangles crosswise on 1 large or 2 small ungreased cookie sheets (rectangles should not touch); if using crescent dough, firmly press perforations to seal. In small bowl, mix butter and 2 tablespoons honey. Brush over dough.

Bake 8 to 12 minutes or until light golden brown; cool 15 minutes.

Grease 15x10x1-inch pan. Carefully place 1 crust on pan. Top evenly with turkey. Place second crust over turkey; top with cheese and ham. Place third crust over ham; spread evenly with preserves. Top with fourth crust; brush top with 2 tablespoons honey. Sprinkle honey with sesame seed.

Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until crust is deep golden brown and loaf is hot. Let stand 5 minutes. Cut into 8 slices.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Ice Cream Cake

My friend wanted an ice cream cake for her birthday celebration this weekend, and instead of allowing Cold Stone or Baskin Robins the honors, I decided to take matters into my own hands and make one myself.

1 cake mix of choice (I used a yellow cake mix)
4-6 cups ice cream of choice (I used oreo cookie)
1 brownie mix
Fudge ice cream topping
2 Cups Crushed Oreo cookies
Frosting of choice; store bought, cool whip, etc.

Step 1: Make cake according to box recipe, bake in two 9 inch round pans. You only need one round cake for this, unless you want your ice cream cake REALLY tall. Freeze cake for a few hours, it makes handling a lot easier.
Step 2: Set ice cream out for 5-10 minutes to soften. Remove frozen cake from freezer and cut in half horizontally. Use 2-3 cups of softened ice cream and spread on top of the bottom layer of the cut cake. Work quickly to minimize ice cream melting entirely.
Step 3: Freeze for 2-3 hours.
Step 4: While cake is freezing, mix up brownies and place in a 9 inch round cake pan...the same cake pan you used for the cake. It would be wise to cover the bottom of the pan with parchment or wax paper. Bake, then cool completely before using in step 5.
Step 5: Remove cake from freezer and spread a layer of fudge ice cream topping on top of ice cream layer.
Step 6: Place cooled brownie layer on top of fudge layer. You can either proceed to steps 7-8, or let the cake freeze for another hour or two. I let my cake freeze first because I think it's easier to work with the cake when it's entirely frozen.
Step 7: Set ice cream out for 5-10 minutes to soften. Remove frozen cake from freezer and place 2-3 cups of softened ice cream on top of brownie layer.
Step 8: Place another layer of fudge topping on top of ice cream layer, and top it off with the top portion of your yellow cake.
Step 9: Freeze cake for another 1-2 hours.
Step 10: Remove cake from freezer and frost with frosting of choice.
Step 11: Use a food processor or blender to crush oreo cookies, and quickly spread around frosting layer.
Step 12: Freeze at least 2-3 hours before serving or overnight if you planned ahead. 
Step 13: Devour cake!

I was told this cake tasted better than Cold Stone cakes, I don't know if that's true or not, but I will tell you this, it was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G, and the perfect treat for the hot days we're having here.

There are a lot of steps to making this cake, but each step takes less than 10 minutes to do, so it's not as overwhelming at the steps might seem. I started making my cake on Thursday so it would be ready by Saturday, it made it a LOT easier.

The great thing about ice cream cake is that you can make it yours, and be creative with what kind of ice cream and cake you use. I think it would be really good to do a chocolate cake with reese's peanut butter cup ice cream, and instead of decorating it with crushed oreo cookie, using mini reese's peanut butter cups to line the cake.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Marinated Cucumbers

The first time I made these, a few months ago, John asked if our fridge could always be stocked with them. Our fridge isn't always stocked with marinated cucumbers, but we've definitely had them a lot in the last few months. I hope I don't ever get sick of them. To me, marinated cucumber slices taste so refreshing and make the perfect summer snack. In fact, I'm chowing down on some right now for lunch!
Image source found here

Equal parts water, white vinegar, and sugar.
Although, my measurements usually look something like this:
3 TBS Vinegar
2 TBS Water
1 1/2-2 TBS Sugar
I adjust the measurements accordingly depending on the size of my cucumber.
I've heard dill is good to throw into the marinade as well, but I've yet to do that.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Grandma Cox’s Potato Yeast Rolls

Into 1/3 cup of warm water, add 2 packages of yeast.  Stir until dissolved.  Add into the warm yeast water 3/4 cup of sugar. 
(This is a great way to test your yeast and make sure it’s workingthe sugar will make the yeast foam).
Boil 1 medium potato which has been peeled and diced in 1 1/2 c. of boiling water (until the pieces are really soft). 
Do not drain off any water which has not boiled out of the potatoes!
Add 2 cups of milk and 1/2 c. shortening. 
Beat until really smooth (I use an electric beater).
Add 2 tsp. salt and yeast mixture.
Stir in 8 3/4 - 9 cups of flour.  When the mixture is too thick & you can’t stir any longer, start kneading the flour into the dough.  Do not add too much flour, the mixture will feel a little sticky.  (I like whole wheat flour but Mike does not).

Spray bowl with Pam for baking and cover the dough with a clean tea towel.  Let the dough rise in a warm spot.  About 1-2 hours.

Roll the dough out until it’s around 1/2” thick.  Cut out your rolls using a round cookie cutter.  Dip one side in melted butter and fold over.  Place onto a cookie sheet.  Cover your rolls with a tea towel and let rise again until double in size.  Depending on how warm the room isthe rolls will rise in about an hour.

Bake rolls at 400˚ for about 8-10 minutes.  Serve warmYUMMY!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Crispy Peanut Butter Cups

I made these today, and they're a perfect, quick, sweet treat. Yum!

Source found here

Crispy Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

Adapted from Crunchy Buckeyes.
Yield: 30 mini cups

1 1/4 cups smooth peanut butter (I used chunky)
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups crispy rice cereal (I omitted these, but only because I didn't have any)
1 3/4 cups milk chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease mini muffin cups with non-stick spray and add a scant Tablespoon chocolate chips into each cup. Melt in the oven for 5 minutes. With the back of a spoon, smooth out the top of the chocolate chips while they’re still warm. Set aside. (You could also melt the chocolate chips in q microwave or on the stovetop and spoon into cups.)
2. In a large bowl, cream together peanut butter and butter until smooth. Add in powdered sugar and vanilla, then mix until combined. Pour in crispy rice cereal and mix again until combined.
3. Drop heaping Tablespoons of the peanut butter mixture into each mini muffin cup. Smooth with the back of a spoon and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes before eating. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Amy's note: I didn't have rice krispies, and I used crunchy peanut butter instead of smooth. I also added some chocolate to the top of the peanut butter to make it more like a reese's peanut butter cup.  Quick, easy, delicious! What more do you need?