Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Dried Cinnamon Apples

2 cups pineapple juice
8 oz. red hot candy

Heat to dissolve candy. Peel, slice and core apples and let them sit in the juice for a few minutes. Spray dehydrator racks with cooking spray. Drain apple slices and put them on the racks. Dry 10-12 hours. Store in airtight containers in a cool place.

NOTES:This recipe is from my aunt Sheila. YUM!

Butternut Squash Cake

6 Tbsp. butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup vanilla yogurt
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cups buttermilk
2 cups shredded peeled butternut squash (1 small)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, optional

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 package, 3 ounces, cream cheese, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
2-4 Tbsp. milk
1 1/2 tsp. maple flavor
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, optional

Heat oven to 350. Spray bottom of 13x9 with cooking spray.
In large bowl, beat 3/4 cup butter and the granulated sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in yogurt and eggs until fluffy. Beat in baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add flour alternately with buttermilk, scraping side of bowl. Beat 1 minute. Stir in squash and 1/2 cup walnuts. Spread in pan.
Bake 30-40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely.
In medium bowl, beat 1/2 cup butter and the cream cheese with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar, 2 Tbsp. milk and the maple flavor. Beat until smooth and creamy, adding additional milk if needed. Frost cake. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup walnuts. Cover and refrigerate.

NOTES:Hello fall! This is a great fall recipe. We had over 2 dozen butternut squash from one plant this year so I needed something creative to do with some of it. We loved it. I lightened it a bit from a Betty Crocker fall baking booklet I bought.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Double Chocolate Cherry Cookies

Before I started blogging, or even knew about blogging, I loved to collect those little Pillsbury and Betty Crocker cookbooks that you get at the checkout stand. I have a ton of them. This recipe comes from a Betty Crocker one with lots of fall baking recipes. I love anything dark chocolate and it usually pairs well with almost any fruit.

We had lots of cherries this year from our tree and I ended up dehydrating a bunch of them so they wouldn't go to waste, but I didn't really know what I was going to do with them. This ended up being the perfect to use some of them up.

1 1/4 cups sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1 egg
1 3/4 cup flour
1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 cup quick-cooking oats
1 cup dark chocolate chips
1 cup dried cherries

Heat oven to 350. In stand mixer, fitted with a beater attachment beat sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add milk, almond extract and egg, mixing to incorporate. Add in flour, cocoa, soda and salt and mix well. Switch to a paddle attachment and add in oats, chocolate chips and cherries, mixing well. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls about 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake 10-12 minutes.

Linked to...
This Week's Cravings @ Mom's Crazy Cooking

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Barbecue Chicken Bacon Pizza with Caramalized Onions

Mmm, this is one of our favorite pizzas. If you're looking to change up pizza night at your house, try this! Here's a hint: get the bread going first, then while it's rising, caramelize the onion, crisp the bacon and cook the chicken. This is a quick weeknight meal or something fun for the weekend.

Makes 1 Pizza

1 recipe Perfect Pizza Crust
your favorite barbecue sauce (I used hickory flavored Bullseye)
1/2 chicken breast
1/2 lb. bacon
1/2 medium onion
mozzarella cheese

Peel onion and cut into thin slices. Heat a little oil in a frying pan, add onion, separating rings, then reduce heat to medium and cook until golden. Place bacon on cooking sheet and bake at 400 for about 12-15 minutes. While bacon is cooking, preheat barbecue grill; cut chicken breast into 3 tenders and coat with barbecue sauce. Grill 3-4 mintues on each side. Let rest and cut into tiny pieces. Remove bacon from oven and blot on paper towels. Crumble or cut into small pieces.

Make bread dough according to recipe. After is rises, roll out dough on a pizza stone; spread barbecue sauce first then layer the chicken, bacon, onions then cheese. Bake at 425 for about 15 minutes.

Linked to...
This Week's Cravings @ Mom's Crazy Cooking

Raspberry Lime Sheet Cake

For the cake:
2¾ cups all-purpose flour
1½ tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1½ cups sugar
Zest of two limes
½ cup canola oil
¼ cup plain yogurt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
¾ cup milk
1 tbsp. lime juice
2 cups fresh raspberries

For the glaze:
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1-3 tbsp. lime juice

Preheat the oven to 350° F. Lightly grease and flour a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir together and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the sugar and lime zest. Mix together with your fingers until the sugar is moist and fragrant. Add the canola oil and beat until combined. Mix in the yogurt and vanilla extract. In a measuring cup, combine the milk and lime juice. Stir in half of the dry ingredients on low speed, mixing just until incorporated. Mix in the milk mixture until smooth. Beat in the remaining dry ingredients on low speed just until blended. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth with a spatula. Drop the raspberries evenly over the surface of the batter. Bake for 32-36 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely.

To make the glaze, place the confectioners' sugar in a bowl. Whisk in a tablespoon of lime juice, and adding more as needed until the glaze has reached a good consistency for drizzling. *Drizzle over the surface of the cooled cake. Let set before serving.

*Another option here would be to poke holes in the cake while it is warm and spoon the glaze over the whole cake (there was pleanty of glaze to do this.)

NOTES:Great and easy recipe, especially if you have access to fresh raspberries or just love them like I do. I think this would work fine with frozen raspberries as well; no need to thaw before dropping them on the cake. Recipe from Annie's Eats.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Tomatillo Salsa

Last year we planted 2 tomatillo plants in our garden because we thought it would be fun and something new. Unfortunately, they didn't do very well. This year, we made quite a bit larger garden plot and got a few more tips on gardening and decided to plant 6 plants! Wow, that was a lot. Tomatillos produce a lot of fruit. The good thing is they keep really well. When harvested, tomatillos keep, whole with husks on, for about a month in a zip-top bag in your fridge. You can also freeze them whole after washing and removing the husks.

Tomatillos are actually part of the gooseberry family, contrary to the misconception that they are tomatoes. This sweet fruit makes for a wonderful salsa verde and pairs perfectly with flavors like cumin and fresh cilantro.

This is a versatile salsa in that you can eat it with chips, cook it up with some chicken, add it to rice, on a burrito or even use it as a soup base for a white bean chicken chili.

5 1/2 cups chopped, cored, husked tomatillos (about 2 lbs.)
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped green chili peppers (if you want to use fresh, use poblanos or anaheims)
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. minced cilantro
2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. red pepper
1/2 cup vinegar
1/4 cup lime juice

Combine all ingredients in large sauce pot. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Ladle hot salsa into hot jars, leaning 1/4-inch head space. Adjust two-piece caps. Process 15 minutes in a boiling water canner.

SOURCE:Ball Blue Book of Canning
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