Saturday, September 20, 2014

Crock Pot Chicken Cacciatore Pasta Sauce

I served this with Zoodles (zucchini noodles) that I made on the smallest setting of my Paderno Spiral Vegetable Slicer.

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore Pasta Sauce
(from the ATK Slow Cooker Revolution Volume 2 "Chicken Cacciatore Sauce" pg 191

1. Microwave 8 ounces sliced white mushrooms, 1 cup chopped onion, 2 Tablespoons tomato paste,
1 Tablespoon olive oil, 1 Tablespoon minced garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon herbes de Provence in bowl, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes.  Drain vegetable mixture and transfer to slow cooker.

2. Stir 1 28-ounce can tomato puree, 1/4 ounce dried porcini mushrooms (rinsed and minced)
1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper into slow cooker.  Season 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs with salt and pepper and nestle into slow cooker.  Cover and cook until chicken is tender, 
4 to 5 hours on low.

3. Let sauce settle for 5 minutes, then use a large spoon to skim excess fat from surface.  Break chicken into 1-inch pieces with tongs. Before serving with pasta or Zoodles, stir in 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley and season with salt and pepper to taste.

The Paderno Spiral Vegetable Slicer

Monday, November 12, 2012

Tall Glass o' Milk Brownies

This is my favorite brownie recipe.  Not a lot of extras, just chocolaty goodness through and through.  Best served with a nice, cold glass of milk.

Tall Glass o' Milk Brownies
(from The America's Test Kitchen Family Baking Book "Classic Brownies")

1.  Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 325 degrees.  Line a 13 by 9-inch baking pan with foil and grease the foil.  Whisk 1 1/4 cups (5 ounces) cake flour, 3/4 teaspoon baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt together in a medium bowl.

2.  Melt 6 ounces unsweetened chocolate with 12 Tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter in the microwave, stirring often, 1 to 3 minutes.  Transfer the chocolate mixture to a large bowl and let it cool slightly.  Gradually whisk in 2 1/4 cups (15 3/4 ounces) sugar, followed by 4 room-temperature
eggs, mixed in one at a time, until combined.  Whisk in 1 Tablespoon vanilla.  Fold in the flour mixture, in 3 additions, with a rubber spatula until just incorporated.  Gently mix in 1 cup semi-sweet
chocolate chips.

3.  Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, and smooth the top.  Bake the brownies until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, 30 to 35 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking.

4.  Let the brownie cool completely in the pan, set on a wire rack.  about 2 hours.  Remove the brownies from the pan using the foil, cut into squares, and serve.

I use Hershey's Unsweetened Chocolate Baking Bar and Trader Joe's Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

A Couple of Fall Recipes

I'm moving these fall-favorite recipes over from my old blog.  The salad dressing is great for Christmas, too.

Lowfat Cranberry-Balsamic Dressing
(from the America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook)

2 cups cranberry juice (I use Ocean Spray)
3 Tbs balsamic vinegar
2 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbs minced shallot
1 tea minced fresh thyme or 1/2 tea dried
1/2 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tea salt
1/2 tea pepper

1. Simmer the cranberry juice in a small saucepan over medium heat until slightly thickened and reduced to 2/3 cup, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and refrigerate until cool, about 15 minutes.

2. Shake the chilled, thickened juice with the remaining ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid until combined. The dressing can be refrigerated for up to 4 days; bring to room temperature, then shake vigorously to recombine before using.

For my salad, I put in red-leaf and butter lettuces, thinly sliced red onion, dried cranberries, crumbled goat cheese (chevre), sweet and spicy pecans (from Trader Joes),  and croutons.  You could add apples or pears, as well.

Corn Muffins
(from the America's Test Kitchen Family Baking Book)

2 cups (10 oz) all-purpose flour
1 cup (5 oz) yellow cornmeal (preferably stone-ground, medium grind)
1 1/2 tea baking powder
1 tea baking soda
1/2 tea salt
3/4 cup sour cream
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup whole milk
8 Tbs (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 large eggs

1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin.

2. Whick the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, whick the sour cream, sugar, milk, melted butter and eggs together until smooth. Gently, fold the sour cream mixture into the flour mixture with a rubber spatula until just combined (do not overmix).

3. Using a greased 1/3-cup measure, portion the batter into each muffin cup. Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out with just a few crumbs attached, 15 to 20 minutes, rotating the pan half-way through baking.

4. Let the muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then flip out onto a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Lavender Baby Set

I made a cardigan and hat set for my friend's little girl:
Raglan Cardigan from the book, 60 quick Baby Knits.
(errata available here)
(ravelry notes here)

I found the perfect purple button at Joann Fabrics.

Baby Earflap Hat from Allicrafts
(Heart applique from Skip to my Lou)
(ravelry notes here)
Li'l Cutie!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Mother Bear #3

My third Mother Bear for the Mother Bear Project:

My first Mother Bear made it all the way to Mali, Africa:

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Saturdays and Sundaes

This past weekend, we had some friends over for a make-your-own-sundae party.

Banner courtesy of The Girl.
The Boy's ready to dig in.


The Girl is busy with her creation.

Yes, please.  With a cherry on top.
Oatmeal Chocolate-Chip Cookies
(recipe coming soon!)
Tall Glass-o-Milk Brownies
(recipe coming soon!)

Friends having fun:

Monday, August 20, 2012

A Light Summer Supper

The hubs and I shared a platter of Bruschetta y Crostini for dinner tonight. 

It was just the thing to hit the spot on a hot summer evening.