Saturday, July 31, 2010

Golden Amaretto Cake from Spirit of Christmas cookbook

1 yellow cake mix
4 eggs
3/4 c amaretto
6 oz instant vanilla pudding mix
1/2 c vegetable oil
1/2 c water
1/4 t almond extract
6 T amaretto
1 c confectioners sugar, sifted

1. Preheat oven to 350. Combine first 7 ingredients in mixing bowl and blend well.
2. Pour into 2 greased and lightly floured 6 cup gelatin molds (I used 2 cake pans).
3. Bake 40-45 minutes until done.
4. Combine 6 T amaretto and confectioners sugar. While cakes are still warm in molds, poke holes in cakes; pour liqueur over. Allow to cool in molds 2 hours.

In my opinion: This was pretty good. I think I am more of a frosting girl so I would describe this as more of a coffee cake. Next time I'll make an amaretto buttercream frosting. My neighbor really liked it.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Slow-Cooker Chicken Gumbo by Robin Miller

1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 (10-ounce) package frozen okra, thawed
2 links andouille sausage, diced
1 cup chopped onions
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 cups reduced-sodium tomato juice
2 cups cooked rice

In a slow-cooker, combine the chicken and all remaining ingredients except the rice. Mix well to combine. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or high for 3 to 4 hours. Serve over rice.

In my opinion: This was my first time to make Gumbo and I've only eaten it once (a long time ago). I thought this was really easy to make, just chop everything up and toss it in. The flavors were just wonderful. We will definitely have this again and again.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Couscous with Mushrooms by The Deen Brothers

3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
10 ounces white mushrooms, quartered and thinly sliced
1 medium (about 1 cup) Vidalia onion, finely chopped (I used a white onion)
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup uncooked couscous (found in stores near the rice)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves, optional, for garnish

1. Heat the oil and butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 7 minutes. Add the onion and cook 5 minutes more.

2. Add the chicken broth and the salt. Bring to a boil and stir in the couscous. Immediately remove the pan from the heat, cover it, and let it stand until all the liquid is absorbed, about 5 to 10 minutes.

3. Uncover and fluff the couscous with a fork. Transfer to a serving bowl, garnish with the basil, if desired, and serve immediately.

In my opinion: This was the first time I have ever made couscous. The first time I ate it was when a friend brought me a meal after having my 4th baby. She mixed fresh rosemary in hers and it was wonderful. This recipe was wonderful too! My husband liked it and he doesn't like mushrooms. It was pretty easy to make, I actually chopped the mushrooms into smaller pieces. We had it with chicken and salad but it is a great rice substitute with any meal.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Raspberry Bars by Bisquick

2 cups Original Bisquick® mix
1 cup quick-cooking oats
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup raspberry spreadable fruit, jam or preserves

1. Heat oven to 400°F. Grease square pan, 9x9x2 inches. Mix Bisquick mix, oats and brown sugar in large bowl. Cut in butter, using fork or pastry blender, until mixture is crumbly.
2. Press half of the crumbly mixture in pan. Spread fruit over crumbly mixture to within 1/4 inch of edges. Top with remaining crumbly mixture; press gently into fruit.
3. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until light brown; cool. For 24 bars, cut into 6 rows by 4 rows
In my opinion: What a super simple recipe! Who doesn't keep Bisquick on hand?
These are in my oven now so check back for my review.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Grilled Rosemary & Garlic Red Potatoes

This is something I came up with on my own. They turned out great.

1 1/2 lbs red potatoes (washed)
Extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic
rosemary (fresh is best but I used dried)
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper

1. Cut potatoes, if necessary, to the size of the smallest potatoes so they will cook evenly. Place potaotes in a grill pan. Drizzle with olive oil (enough to cover potatoes).
2. Press 1 garlic clove over the potatoes.
3. Salt and pepper to taste. Add rosemary (rub dried rosemary in your hands to awaken the flavors).
4. Toss until coated.
5. Place on the grill for approximately 12-15 minutes, stirring, if necessary, to keep from burning. When the potatoes are easy to penetrate with a fork, they are ready.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Join me on Facebook

I love to collect and try new recipes. In the past, I didn't have a good place to keep recipes I had tried or even new concoctions I came up with. I go through phases of collecting different types of food, such as Crock Pot recipes or freezer friendy recipes. Now I post them here and make them available to anyone else who loves cooking and baking.

Feel free to join 'Aggieland Mommy Cooks' on Facebook and please share your favorites or your cooking blogspot as well.

Buffalo Blue Cheese Chicken Sandwich by Betty Crocker

1 3/4 lb ground chicken (found with the ground turkey)
1/4 cup Buffalo wing sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 to 3 drops red pepper sauce
6 burger buns, split
6 leaves green leaf lettuce
1/4 cup refrigerated chunky blue cheese dressing
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese (weskipped this)

1. Heat gas or charcoal grill. Carefully brush oil on grill rack. In large bowl, mix chicken, wing sauce, salt and pepper sauce.
2. Shape mixture into six 1/2-inch patties, each about 4 inches in diameter. Place on grill over medium heat. Cover grill; cook 10 to 12 minutes or until thermometer inserted in center of patty reads 165°F.
3. Place buns on grill, cut sides down. Cover grill; cook 1 to 2 minutes or until toasted. Place lettuce and patty on bottom of each bun. In small bowl, stir together dressing and blue cheese. Top patties with dressing mixture and tops of buns.

In my opinion: These were pretty good. The chicken was a little dry...not sure why.

Garlic Grilled Tomatoes by Paula Deen

4 ripe red tomatoes
House Seasoning, recipe follows
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano

1. Cut the tomatoes in half crosswise, season with House Seasoning. Heat the oil in a small frying pan over medium heat. Add the garlic, and cook until just starting to turn golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Pour the garlic and oil into a heatproof bowl.

2. Oil the grill and set for high heat. Place the tomatoes cut side down and grill for 3 to 5 minutes. Turn over, top with the garlic oil mixture and continue to cook for another 3 minutes. Remove from grill and top with thyme, House Seasoning and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Serve immediately.

House Seasoning:
1 cup salt
1/4 cup black pepper
1/4 cup garlic powder
Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months.

In my opinion: These tomatoes were good even though we didn't have any thyme. I watched the video before posting this and Paula salts and peppers her tomatoes after she takes them off the grill. I think we'll do that next time.

Grilled Pineapple Pound Cake a la mode by Paul Deen

1 (20 ounce) can sliced pineapple
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
6 slices pound cake
Raspberries, for topping
Nuts, for topping
Whipped cream, for topping

1. Drain pineapple, reserving 1/3 cup juice and 6 pineapple rings (save remaining juice and pineapple for another use).

2. Combine butter, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg.

3. Brush half of the mixture on both sides of pineapple rings and cake slices.

4. On an uncovered grill over medium heat, cook pineapple and cake for 1 to 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown, brushing occasionally with remaining pineapple juice mixture.

5. Top each slice of cake with a pineapple ring. Top with raspberries, nuts and whipped cream, if desired. Serve immediately

In my opinion: This was a yummy dessert. It said "a la mode" so we added a little scoop of vanilla ice cream. My 5 year old asked for more.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Easy BBQ Ribs by Kraft

4 lbs pork ribs
1 c BBQ sauce

1. CUT ribs into 2-rib sections.
2. PLACE ribs in Dutch oven or stockpot. Add enough water to completely cover ribs; cover with lid. Bring to boil; simmer on medium-low heat 20 min. Drain.
3. HEAT grill to medium heat. Grill ribs 10 min. or until done, turning occasionally and brushing generously with barbecue sauce

In my opinion: We've never made ribs before so we don't have much to compare to, but not only were these EASY to make, they tasted fabulous! I'm not sure that there's a need to try another recipe.

Friday, July 2, 2010

4th of July

So what are you having for the 4th?

Down here in the South, we like to grill so, weather permitting, here are some ideas for your 4th feast:
festive lights
red, white, and blue ribbons
red, white, and blue candles
star shaped ice cubes (add confetti inside before freezing)

Star shaped pancakes topped with whipped cream, berries, and red, white, and blue sprinkles along with "stripes" of bacon

Ribs, steak, sausage/brats, or burgers
Strawberry Shortcake by Paula Deen
Fruit pizza made with strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries

Fun for the kids-
Rice Krispie treats made with red, white, and blue sprinkles OR M&Ms, then cut out with star cookie cutters and drizzled with red, white, and blue icing or melted candy melts
Red or blue Kool-Aid
Red or blue Jell-o or Jell-o jigglers