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April 21, 2015

Homemade Brussels Cookies


Rob has been begging me for years to try my hand at making homemade Brussels cookies, I've always been intimidated by the delicate cookies, assuming they'd be difficult to make. But, when I googled a recipe I was shocked that they didn't seem too hard. And believe me, they weren't! The hardest part was scooping out the dough one tiny teaspoon at a time.

I was also shocked at how much these tasted like store-bought Brussels. Delicate, rich, delicious!!

Aside from Oat Bran, the ingredient list is all pantry staples, and it's not like Oat Bran is hard to find! Just not something I normally have laying around. Once I finally remembered to buy some, I had to make up some cookies!

Homemade Brussels Cookies
Ingredients:
1/2 cup sugar
2 Tablespoons honey
7 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 Tablespoons milk
1/2 cup white whole wheat bread
1/2 cup oat bran
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 ounces dark or semi-sweet chocolate

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 325* and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper

In a bowl, cream the butter, sugar and honey until light and fluffy. Stir in vanilla and milk.

Sift together the flour, oat bran, baking powder and salt. Mix the dry ingredients in to the butter and sugar on low until well blended.

Scoop 1 teaspoon rounds and place on the prepared sheets. Leave at least 3 inches between cookies as they WILL spread! Bake for 10-14 minutes, until the cookies are golden around the edges.

Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for 1 minute. Carefully remove to a wire rack and cool completely. They will flatten as they cool.

When ready to assemble, warm the chocolate in your microwave on in a double boiler (or about an inch of simmering water in a saucepan, topped with a metal bowl. Once the chocolate is melted, spread evenly over the flat half of the cookies, topping with the other half of the cookies to get sandwiches! Allow to cool before eating.

Source: adapted from Food52


April 16, 2015

Chicken Mudega Pizza (Pizza with Chicken and Prosciutto over a Lemon Wine Sauce)


Pizza. Quite possibly the best meal ever. All of my favorites in one bite. Bread, cheese, indulgence. And the best thing about pizza is that it can be completely new every time to make (or order) one by switching up a few things here and there. Last time you went simple with pepperoni, why don't you try a chicken pizza this time?

One day when eating one of my new favorites, I thought about how great it would be on a pizza. A white wine lemon sauce with chicken and prosciutto. It was a real winner, that's for sure!

Chicken Mudega Pizza (or, Pizza with Chicken and Prosciutto on a Lemon Wine Sauce)
Ingredients:
1 recipe of your favorite pizza dough, homemade or store bought
2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 onion, finely diced
1/2 cup plus 1 1/2 Tablespoon chicken broth, divided
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 Tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 Tablespoon cornstarch
2 Tablespoons half and half
3 ounces prosciutto, diced in thin strips
1 cup cooked shredded or cubed chicken
1/2 cup sliced, sauteed mushrooms if desired (I omit)
4 ounces White American Cheese, shredded *
4 ounces Mozzarella, shredded *
1/4 teaspoon liquid smoke *

** Note - if you're in St. Louis, use 8 ounces of shredded Provel cheese for the most authentic "mudega" experience, otherwise the combination of White American, Mozzarella and liquid smoke is a great substitute **

Directions:
Preheat oven according to the dough recipe you're using

To prepare the sauce, heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a small sauce pan. Add onion and saute about 2-3 minutes until translucent. Add garlic and saute about 30 seconds. Add 1/2 cup broth, wine and lemon juice; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until heated through.In a small bowl, dissolve cornstarch in remaining 1 1/2 Tablespoons chicken broth. Stir in half and half then slowly stir in to sauce. Simmer until thickened, about 2-3 minutes.

To top the pizza, In a small skillet, heat remaining olive oil and add sliced prosciutto. Saute about 3 minutes until the prosciutto is slightly crispy. Remove from oil and drain on a paper towel lined plate.

Lightly flour your workstation (counter top, silicone mat, etc.), rolling pin and dough. Roll dough out to the desired thickness and size for your pizza. Spoon about 3/4 cup of the prepared sauce, and spread evenly over the dough to about 1/2" from the edge.

If using a cheese mixture, mix the cheeses and liquid smoke. Sprinkle the dough with cheese. Top with prosciutto, chicken and mushrooms.

Bake in the oven according to the instructions for your dough, until the cheese is melted and starting to bubble and brown.

Allow to sit a few quick minutes before slicing and enjoying hot (just not scalding hot!)

Source: Coffee and Cannolis original


April 13, 2015

Honey Balsamic Pork Roast (Slow Cooker)



I'm always, always, always looking for a good slow cooker recipe, but you'd never know it because I rarely use mine. Every time I use it, I think to myself (ok, probably out loud a lot too), "Why don't I use my crock-pot more often?" Probably because it is hard to find a good recipe. Each recipe I've posted on the blog has been great, but many of them are foods I don't want to eat all the time, with the exception of the shredded beef for tacos.

While this isn't something we'll eat on a weekly basis, we've had it twice in as many months, so that's saying something for a slow cooker recipe. It's slightly sweet, very tender, and plenty juicy! It's great over a bed of white rice and a side of roasted veggies!

Honey Balsamic Pork Roast (Slow Cooker)
Ingredients:
2 lbs boneless pork roast, or pork tenderloin
Salt, to taste
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/3 cup chicken broth
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon Honey

Directions:
Season the pork with salt, garlic powder and red pepper flakes and place in the slow cooker.

Mix broth and vinegar together, pouring over pork. Drizzle pork with honey.

Set slow cooker for 4 hours on high, or 6 hours on low.

Once the pork is cooked through, remove with tongs to a bowl, and shred using 2 forks, or the tongs. It should be very tender, practically shredding itself when removed from the crock-pot.

Add 1/2 cup of the remaining sauce and keep warm until ready to serve.

Source: SkinnyTaste


April 9, 2015

(M&Ms) Gooey Butter Cake


Gooey Butter Cake, once considered a St. Louis delicacy, is now becoming more and more common/popular across the country, thanks due to Paula Deen and her love of all things butter. But, let's be real, we in St. Louis will always cherish growing up with Gooey Butter Cake well before Paula Deen was a household name. If you're unfamiliar, Gooey Butter Cake is kind of like a sweet and rich coffee cake, often cut in to squares similar to a brownie or blondie, with a distinct separation of a dense cake, and gooey cream cheese. In short, it's pure deliciousness!

This recipe is not from scratch, but that's OK! I've tried plenty of from scratch versions and they're just not the same. Not bad, just not the same. I'm still trying to find a from scratch version though, so maybe one day!

The best thing about this recipe is that you can make many variations. Use a chocolate cake mix and add mini chocolate chips to the topping. Try a spice cake and kind of make a cinnamon roll version (disclaimer: I have not tried this with a spice cake mix!). The possibilities are endless. Try one of these from the blog!

Nutella Gooey Butter Cake
Key Lime Gooey Butte Cake
Gooey Butter Cookies


Gooey Butter Cake
Ingredients:
1 package yellow cake mix
3 eggs (separated)
2 sticks of butter (separated, melted)
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
16oz powdered sugar
(1 cup  M&Ms if desired)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350*

Combine cake mix, one egg and 1 stick of melted butter with an electric mixer, Grease a 9 x 13 pan. Pat the mixture evenly in to the prepared baking pan.

In a clean bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth, then add the remaining two eggs, vanilla, and remaining stick of melted butter. Add powdered sugar and mix well.

Spread the cream cheese mixture evenly over the cake mixture.

(If using M&Ms, sprinkle evenly over the top of the cream cheese mixture. If you want to use chocolate chips, add them TO the cream cheese mixture. Have fun with it, try something new!)

Bake for 40-50 minutes until the cake edges are golden and a cake tester comes out clean. The center should still be a little gooey (it is a GOOEY butter cake afterall!)

Source: Many St. Louis homes growing up! The addition of M&Ms was all mine!