Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Lemon Almond Bread



Lemon Almond bread is a nice change from regular ol' banana bread.  A tangy, sweet treat.  This recipe comes straight out of the Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook...you know that red and white book that everyone has in their kitchen.  I have two of these.  One I got when I got married...it is 15 years old.  The other I got when my Nana passed away.  It was printed in 1953.  The books have different recipes and recipes have different ingredients...I guess times change and so do recipes...The sweet part about my Nana's book is that she has made little notes in it...she has the date and review by recipes.  For example Chocolate Drop Cookies were "Good" made on December 23, 1956.  Her book also has a very 50's section called "Casseroles and One-Dish Meals," mine doesn't.  Her's also has a section called "Table Settings and Entertainment."  This is a lost art...could this just be because it has now been left out of the Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook?  Don't think so.


I would love to add a picture of this lovely bread sliced up to eat, but we delivered it to the neighbor who just gave us his old playset for the kids! 

LEMON ALMOND BREAD
1-3/4 cups flour
3/4 cups sugar
2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
1 egg, beaten
1 cup milk
1/4 c. cooking oil
2 t. finely zested lemon peel
2 T. lemon juice
1/2 c. chopped almonds (I use sliced, cuz that is what I keep handy!)

Topping:
2 T. lemon juice
1 T. sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a loaf pan and set aside. Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Combine egg, milk oil and lemon juice in another bowl.  Make a well in the center of dry ingredients  and add went ingredients, stirring until just moist. Fold in almonds and lemon peel. Spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 50 to 55 minutes or till wooden toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Meanwhile stir together 2 tablespooons lemon juice and 1 tablespoon sugar. While bread is still in pan, brush lemon-sugar mixture over bread. Cool in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from loaf pan and cool on wire rack. Wrap and store overnight before serving.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Pepperoni Pizza Puffs

This is a perfect snack/appetizer or lunch for littles.  You could easily add more stuff like diced bell pepper, cooked and crumbled Italian sausage, diced olives, whatever pizza topping you love.  Serve with or without marinara for dipping.  Serve with fruit or salad to make a lunch. 


I did not have Motzarella to shred, so I diced up four string cheeses.


Does anyone else have a love/hate relationship with the mini-muffin pan.  So fun to make mini-muffins, Corndog Mini-Muffins or pizza puffs...so lame to wash all those little holes!


PEPPERONI PIZZA PUFFS

  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan
  • 3/4 t. baking powder
  • 1 scant t. garlic salt
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 4 oz. Mozzarella, grated, or 4 string cheeses, diced
  • 4 oz. pepperoni, diced
Combine flour, parmesan, baking powder and garlic salt.  Add milk and beaten egg. Stir in Mozzarella and pepperoni.  Let stand 10 minutes.  Prepare a 24 cup mini-muffin pan with nonstick spray.  Fill cups a little over 1/2 full and sprinkle a little more parmesan cheese on top.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes, until puffed and golden.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Peanut Butter Brownie Cookies

One of my girls loves to bake...she had a real hankering to bake something today.  She made these and they were AWESOME! 


After dropping the brownie/cookie dough on the cookie sheet, gently press a ball of heaven...peanut butter and powdered sugar into the center.


This recipe said it would make 24 cookies...so said baker could only make 24 cookies.  As a result there was a little batter left over which she dolloped on top of the peanut butter.


Here is how it looked out the oven with the chocolate hat.


AMAZING!!

PEANUT BUTTER BROWNIE COOKIES

1 (19.5 oz.) Pillsbury Classic Fudge Brownie Mix
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup cream cheese, softened
1 egg
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter

Combine brownie mix, melted butter, softened cream cheese and egg, mixing by hand 50 strokes.  Batter will be thick and sticky.  Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls onto an ungreased cookie sheet.  Combine powdered sugar and peanut butter.  Roll into balls and gently push down in the center of the chocolate cookie.  If you have a little cookie batter left, like we did, you can put a little on top of each peanut butter ball.  Bake at 350 for 10 to 14 minutes, until edges are set.  Let cool on cookie sheet for 30 minutes.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Chicken Spaghetti

Not sure what to say.  I used to be so against you cream of chicken soup.  Why did I hold such a grudge against you cream of chicken soup?  Life gets messy.  There is no time for roux.  I have eaten crow....I have used three cans of cream of chicken soup in 2 days......

This chicken spaghetti was delicious.  I thought it was fantabulous.  Almost everyone at the table licked their plate, except the one who does not like any type of noodle meal....we have an arranged marriage set up for that child....there are other kids out there who don't like noodles.  Who knew.


Ready to mix all the ingredients together.  Why dirty a bowl when you can use the pot you boiled the chicken and noodles in...now that is using your noodle.


Ready to bake....this casserole dish is possibly my favorite kitchen item.  It is a 3 quart enameled cast iron casserole with a lid. 


Who wouldn't love this...except Rowdy Jr.


CHICKEN SPAGHETTI
Give credit where credit is due...the original Chicken Spaghetti was pioneered by the Pioneer Woman.

2 large chicken breasts, boiled and shredded
1 lb. thin spaghetti, broken into 2" pieces
1/4 cup onion, finely diced
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
1 4 oz. jar pimentos, drained and finely diced
2 cans cream of chicken soup
2 cups water, reserved from the chicken and noodle boiling
1 pound sharp Cheddar cheese (or mild)
1 t. Lawry's season salt
Salt and pepper to taste

Bring a large pot of water to boil.  Rinse the chicken breasts and drop in boiling water.  (I actually boiled a whole package of chicken breasts and reserved the rest for another day.)  Reduce to a simmer and simmer chicken for about 25 minutes, until cooked through.  (Now the pioneer woman used a whole chicken, which would make the broth much more flavorful than just some breasts, so I did throw 1 tablespoon of Better Than Bouillon in there, but I don't think it will make or break the recipe if you don't.)  While the chicken is cooking dice the onion, bell pepper and pimentos, break up noodles, open soup cans and grate cheese.  When chicken is done return water to a full boil and throw in the noodles.  Cook the noodles al dente so they won't be mush when baked in the oven.  When noodles are done scoop out 2 cups of water, reserving for mixing with the rest of the casserole ingredients.  Using the same pot you just boiled everything in mix together the noodles, chicken, onion, bell pepper, pimentos, cream of chicken soup, 2/3 of the grated cheese, season salt and reserved water.  Once you have it mixed together thoroughly, add salt and pepper to taste.  I did not add any extra salt since cream of anything tends to be slightly salty.  Grease a 3 quart casserole dish and pour chicken spaghetti in.  Top with remaining cheese and baked at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Let cool 5 to 10 minutes before serving.  You can also make this a day or so ahead and store in the fridge or store in the freezer for a quick meal.  This casserole would be a great take to someone who just had a baby casserole or for your next potluck.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Nacho Casserole

Delicious!  Pinterest is the best thing since sliced bread.  At first glace of the ingredients I wondered what Ranch Style Beans were...then I went to the store and there they were in the bean asile...Ranch Style Beans.  They are kinda like a chili bean...pinto beans in a chili-ish sauce. I did change the name of the recipe at the prompting of my #2 chick.  She said, "This should be called Nacho Casserole."  Now it is.


Let me say a few words about the above picture.  Look at that can of Ranch Style Beans...it looks straight out of the 50's.  I was wondering if it had been on the shelf since the 50's?  I would also like to say if you have seen the movie Food Inc. and are a strict Food Inc'er this recipe is probably not for you...I saw that movie and followed a strict Food Inc'er way for about a day...then I came to my senses.  I love fake cheese.

Nacho Casserole
The original recipe, originally called Mexican Casserole, can be found at Plain Chicken.


  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1 can Ranch Style beans
  • 1 10-12 ounce bag tortilla chips, crushed 
  • 1 can Ro-tel tomatoes (I throw mine in the blender...then there are no tomato chunks for the people to complain about!)
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 package taco seasoning
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Sour cream and salsa for serving


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large skillet, brown meat with onion and drain off fat. Stir in beans, tomatoes, taco seasoning, soup and water. Simmer over medium-low heat until everything is well combined and heated through. Grease a 9×13 casserole dish. Put down a layer of crushed tortilla chips, followed by a layer of the meat/bean mixture, then half of the cheddar cheese. Repeat layers. Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes, or until bubbly. Let sit for 5-10 minutes before serving. Top with sour cream and salsa.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Sour Cream Pound Cake


Who isn't hooked on Pinterest?  Now if there was only time to try every recipe that I have pinned to my board...that would be AMAZING.  (Maybe I should spine less time pinning and more time cooking.)  But life gets busy, I serve spaghetti. 

I made this cake today in honor of Valentine's Day, which is not a holiday we really fall over ourselves to celebrate...but we did enjoy some crafts and treats with our dear friends. 


Then we enjoyed some heart shaped pizzas from Me and Ed's.  We finished off the evening with Sour Cream Pound Cake and homemade whipped cream.

SOUR CREAM POUND CAKE
This recipe comes from the The Cutting Edge of Ordinary where you will find many other delightful looking recipes!
  • 2 stick butter at room temperature (do not substitute)
  • 6 eggs at room temperature
  • 8 ounces sour cream at room temperature
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/4 t. baking soda
  • 1-1/2 t. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 t. almond extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a tube pan or a bundt pan. Use the second rack from the bottom in your oven.

In a mixer, cream the butter and sugar together. Add the eggs in one at a time, beating well after each addition. Fold the baking soda into the sour cream. Add half of the flour and half of the sour cream into the mixer. Beat well. Add in the remaining flour, remaining sour cream and the vanilla and almond extracts. Mix well. Pour into pan and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center tests done. Cool in pan 10 minutes, invert onto rack to cool completely. Dust with powdered sugar if desired.  Serve plain, with whipped cream or whipped cream and fresh fruit.


This post is linked up with Raising Homemakers and Works For Me Wednesday.

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