Category Archives: recipes

Oreo Cookie Cheesecakes? Yes please!

Don’t these look great! (And easy!)

I found this edible magic on The Girl Who Ate Everything blog! Lot’s of good stuff to check out on her blog-it is one of my new favorites, I bet you will like it too!

Cookies and Cream Cheesecakes
Source: original recipe by Martha Stewart; via Cookin’ and Kickin’

Ingredients:
42 Oreos, 30 left whole and 12 coarsely chopped
2 pounds (32 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup sour cream
pinch of salt

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 275°. Line standard muffin pans with liners. Place 1 whole cookie in the bottom of each liner.

Beat cream cheese at medium speed using an electric mixer. Gradually add the sugar, beating until combined. Beat in vanilla.

Drizzle in eggs, a bit at a time. Beat in sour cream and salt. Stir in chopped cookies by hand.

Divide batter evenly among cookie-lined cups, filling each almost to the top. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until filling is set, about 22 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Refrigerate at least 4 hours (or up to overnight). Remove from tins just before serving. Best served really cold! You can garnish with fresh whipped cream and crumbled Oreos if desired.

Makes 30 cheesecakes.

yep…making these!
Hope you and yours have a Very HAPPY Thanksgiving!

Love, Laughter & Candlelight!

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Easy Cheesy Crab Nachos

Just made this easy delicious Crab Nacho recipe for my Mermaid so I thought I’d share… hope you like it as much as we did!

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ingredients:

  • 1 cup Monterey jack cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup Cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 8 ounces whipped cream cheese
  • 1 Lb. cups lump crab meat (fresh is best, but imitation as well as canned can work)
  • 1 tbsp. fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 jalapeno peppers – or – 2 tbsp. canned mild green chilies
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. seasoning salt
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • tortilla or pita chips
  • a dollop of sour cream, diced table onion, and black olive to garnish (optional)

In a medium microwave safe bowl combine crab, cream cheese and seasonings.  Stir gently and microwave at 30 second intervals till warm.  Line an oven proof plate with chips, spoon on the crab mix and top with cheese…pop into the oven to melt cheese and sever warm and gooey. Share and feast!

*As a side note you can add anything YOU like to make great variations…limes, shrimp, veggies, cabbage…get creative!

 

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Love, Laughter & Candlelight!


How to make my non recipe Ceviche…❥

★Ceviche is the coastal regions of Central and Southern America’s version of Sushi. (Although I made my Ceviche with fully cooked fish…)

I tend to approach cooking like my grandmother’s did…recipes are only “guidelines” so feel free to tweak this to your tastes.

How did I make mine?

  • 1 lb. fresh but fully cooked tiny shrimp,
  • 8 oz. crab meat-fresh is best, but canned is fine too.

(traditional Ceviche calls for any raw local FRESH fish thinly sliced and “cooked” in the citrus juice, but not many in my household do raw fish so I went with cooked instead).

  • 2 finely chopped tomatoes
  • 1 finely chopped red onion
  • 1 sour orange juiced
  • 3 limes juiced
  • 1 large handful organic chopped cilantro
  • 2 organic carrots finely diced
  • 2 fresh avocados finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeno finely diced
  • lime and extra avocado to garnish.
  • 2 cloves of fresh garlic, diced
Combine all ingredients in a serving bowl, I added salt, fresh cracked pepper and a bit of Mesquite seasoning to taste.
Serve with salted baked tortilla chips as a dip.  It is also good served on a bed of spinach as a tostada…or with shredded cabbage as fish tacos.
You can substitute any fish you like, but remember- fresh and local is best!
Mangia bene!
Love, Laughter & Candlelight,

 

 


Dinner tonight:Stracciatella (Italian Egg Drop Soup)

For a quick, healthy dinner on a cold night try Stracciatella!

Stracciatella comes from the Italian word stracciato meaning ragged or shredded…

  • You begin with a pot of 6 cups Chicken Broth (you can use Veggie Broth too!)
  • 3 large Eggs (more if you wish to use only eggwhites)
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped Italian parsley
  • a generous handful of chopped fresh Spinach.
  • freshly grated Nutmeg (just a pinch)
  • Sea Salt and Fresh Black Pepper to taste.

Bring the broth to boil in a saucepan.  Combine eggs, parsley, cheese and nutmeg whisk together in a separate bowl.

Whisk the mixture into the boiling stock and reduce heat to low. Continue to whisk for 3 to 4 minutes. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper and divide evenly among 6 warmed soup bowls. Serve immediately, topped with more grated cheese if desired. This is also delicious if you float a slice of garlic rubbed toasted baguette bread on top!  You could add more veggies or mushrooms too!

Mangia!

Love, Laughter & Candlelight!

 

 

 

 


Beef & Bean Chile Verde-it’s whats for dinner!

Do you get tired of trying to come up with quick, low calorie, healthy yummy ideas for dinner?  Well, so do I – this recipe is as good as I hoped!

I wanted to share it with you.

4 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each

Ingredients

  • 1 pound 93%-lean ground beef
  • 2 large red bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 16-ounce jar green salsa, green enchilada sauce or taco sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 15-ounce can pinto or kidney beans, rinsed

Preparation

  1. Cook beef, bell pepper and onion in a large saucepan over medium heat, crumbling the meat with a wooden spoon, until the meat is browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic, chili powder; cook until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Stir in salsa (or sauce) and water; bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in beans and cook until heated through, about 1 minute.

Nutrition

Per serving : 307 Calories; 8 g Fat; 3 g Sat; 3 g Mono; 64 mg Cholesterol; 29 g Carbohydrates; 27 g Protein; 6 g Fiber; 516 mg Sodium; 641 mg Potassium

1 1/2 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 1 starch, 2 vegetable, 3 lean meat

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Reheat just before serving.
  • We serve ours over baked tortilla chips.  Rice would be yummy too!  And a side of Cornbread if I dare to dream.

Love, Laughter & Candlelight!


A Little Fragrance With Your Food

A Little Fragrance With Your Food
By Chris Perrin


There are a million reasons to love candles.  They look nice, they’re elegant, and pyros love them because they’re fire.  Still, the thing we love most about candles is how they smell.  Plug in air fresheners just cannot match the way a candle warms up a room and transforms it through pleasant aromas.  Food can do that, too.

There is an old saying in food: “You eat with your eyes first.”  However, that’s not always true.  When you walk into the kitchen and the smells of baking bread or garlic or cinnamon rolls hits you, you’re eating with your nose first.  The eyes come much, much later.

This is not news to professional chefs, who have been devising ways to turn meals into full sensory experiences for ages.  One of the ways they have been doing this is by serving meals with scented smoke.  It’s a technique that’s been used on shows like Top Chef and Iron Chef, but don’t let that fool you.  Using smells in your own cooking is easy enough to do at home with nothing more than a glass or metal bowl and some plastic wrap.

(Disclaimer: Making smoke is a really cool, unexpected technique that people will love.  It’s also a fire hazard if you’re not careful since we will, after all, be burning things.  Before you try this, have a good kitchen-rated fire extinguisher nearby.  Also, only do this if there is a window you can open lest the smoke detector crash the party.)

The Basic Technique

This is going to be simple.  All you need to do is get some type of food to smolder, lay it in a bowl and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.  The smoke will waft from up from the smoldering item and get trapped in the bowl.  All you need to do is set the bowl down in front of your diners, puncture the wrap and enjoy the aroma as you eat.

As a variation, you can use individual non-flammable (stress non-flammable) trays that have lids for each guest.  Put the meal on the tray, then get individual items smoldering and drop them in glasses in each tray.  Cover and the smoke will get trapped until diners remove the lid.

Okay, So What Should We Use for Smoke?

Good question.   There are two things to consider when deciding what to smoke.  The first is what will actually produce the smoke.  Your best bet is to use either wood chips (hickory, mesquite, apple wood, etc.), nut shells (pecans, walnuts), or some herb branches (rosemary or thyme branches work well.)  Things like citrus peels can work, but they take a lot of effort to get to light and they don’t often smolder, they usually catch fire.

The other thing to consider is pairing the smoldering item to the food being served.  You want to add a complimentary ambiance, not an entirely new element to the meal.  If your dish has rosemary, burn rosemary.  If it was cooked on a cedar plank, use cedar.

At the very least, try to match the feel of the dish to the odor.  For instance, rosemary and thyme work very well for earthy dishes like steaks or mushrooms.  Apple wood would do very well for pork chops because it has a sweeter aroma.  Play around with it and see what combinations work well for you.

There is also a third consideration.  You can save yourself some extra expensive in ingredients if you have food-scented candles.  For instance, serve blueberry cobbler with a blueberry candle or ice cream with a vanilla candle.  If you use candles, you can choose to trap the smoke in a bowl or tray or not.

Whichever way you choose and whichever scent you use, enjoy playing with scents and your food.  It’s a fun way to turn meals into a full sensory experience of your own.

Chris Perrin

Check out Blog Well Done today to get tips great tips on things like vegetarian options, $7.00 dinner challenge and cooking with your kids.  I think Chris is a culinary genius and I know you will love his recipes and sense of humor as much as I do!

BlogWellDone.com Good Food, Good Fun, Well Done!

Follow Chris on Twitter

Mangia bene!


Quick (yet delicious) weekend meal.

Here is a delicious quick recipe from my Gran.   (yes, that is really her picture).

Pasta Carbonara

This picture/article is from a magazine my brother Vince is working on for (discoverthepass.com). Check out their site for lots of cool local business info and history!

Millie’s Pasta Carbonara

  • 1 lb. pasta dry or fresh (preferably fresh)
  • 2 eggs
  • 7 chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 4 cloves of garlic chopped
  • 16oz. pancetta (Italian bacon)
  • 8oz. shaved Parmesan cheese
  • 8 oz. canned peas (optional) *I add sauteed mushrooms to mine instead*

Serves 4-6

Pan fry pancetta, garlic, basil and peas/mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of olive oil until cooked.  Boil pasta then drain completely.  Then while pasta is still steaming hot add the eggs and parmesan and stir for one minute.  After stirring add the pancetta, basil and garlic mixture.  Fold lightly and serve.

Love, Laughter & Candlelight!