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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

super easy and extra delicious whoopie pies!!

I've seen pictures of them posted all over pintrest and anything else that talks about food.  I know you've seen them too.
Whoopie pies!!  Soft, yummy cookies with something creamy and delicious in the middle.
And now I've made them two ways!!
My first try (of course my picture got lost in the great picture crash of 2011) was devils food cookies with cream cheese frosting.
Heres the best part.  All it took was a box of devils food cake mix, one egg and 2 tablespoons of water.  No  joke.  Mix it all together, scoop out your cookies and bake them at 350 for about 15-20 minutes.  The cookies will be soft and chewy.
After they cool, spread a little frosting of your choice and sandwich them together!!
For Thanksgiving, I tried a little variation and went with pumpkin whoopie pies!! (even easier!!)

For the pumpkin ones I used one box of spice cake mix, one 15oz can of pumpkin, mixed it together and baked them the same as before.

They were a huge hit at Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Birthday Pie

September is a huge month for birthdays in my family. And this year, my dad and step mom had a big joint party together.  I decided it would be fun to try my hand at a fruit pie.

I settled on a Dutch Apple Pie.  And it was delicious!!

But not before I made a test pie....

I didn't add enough flour to my crumb topping, so it all melted together and got a little too crunchy :(

The second pie was so pretty.  But I accidentally lost a big bunch of my cell phone pictures so I don't have proof.

I started by peeling and slicing five large-ish granny smith apples.  I sliced mine pretty thin because I wanted to make sure the apples would be tender inside.  I mixed the apples in a big bowl with a half cup of white sugar, a quarter cup of brown sugar about 3 tablespoons of flour, a half teaspoon of cinnamon, a quarter teaspoon of nutmeg and one tablespoon of lemon juice. 

For the best  part yummy topping, I mixed together three quarters cup flour, a quarter cup white sugar, a quarter cup brown sugar and one third cup room temperature butter.  I also added a bit of raw turbinado sugar for a little extra crunch. When you mix it together, make sure you don't mix too much!!!  I made that mistake the first time and the top became more like burnt sugar than crumbly topping.  It should still appear dry and crumbly, the sugar should not be dissolving in the butter!

We keep our fridge pretty cold, so I took out the dough right away and let it sit out while I mixed everything together.  

When I was ready, I unrolled the pie crust and placed it in a glass pie dish, trimmed the edges and pressed them down.  Then I loaded up the apples and pressed them down as much as I could to give me an nice even surface to cover with crumb topping.  

Then I baked the pie at 375 for about 50 minutes.

I got many many a compliment on this pie.  I so wish I had a picture! But it was so simple and I want to keep making pies!! So keep your eye out for more :)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Our Second Bi-Annual Black Friday Friend Dinner

I just made up that name right now.  It's not really a tradition if we've only done it twice....over a year apart.  But it was a great time none the less!
Yesterday was Black Friday, a day known for shopping and trampling people and usually some turkey left overs.  A couple of years ago we had a get together on Black Friday with some of our friends. I made a big batch of spaghetti and we all hung out and had some drinks and great times.
I decided to do it again this year! Bryan has been saying for weeks that he was really in the mood for some enchiladas.  I thought a big dinner with all of our friends would be the perfect time to make them!
They were SO delicious and extraordinarily easy. I made two kinds.  One with green(ish) sauce and one with red.
When I first went to the store to make my purchases, I thought I was going to be able to fit enough enchiladas in one pan to feed everyone. And I was going to split the pan right down the middle, hot on one side, regular on the other.  As I started to prepare my pan, it quickly became clear that one pan just wasn't going to cut it. Which of course meant I did not have enough sauce for two pans of enchiladas.  I had to enlist the help of a friend who was coming for dinner so I didn't end up with the perfect sauce to supplement my mistake. But the result was still delicious.  Next time, I'll buy one big can of red and one big can of green.  For the makeshift sauce, I had one that was just hot sauce and one that was a jalapeno sauce.
I picked up some chicken breast filets from the store and rubbed them with a mixture of taco seasoning, fajita seasoning and just a pinch of cayenne pepper.  I grilled them in my trusty grill pan and then shredded them up.  After that I mixed them up with some cheese (okay, a lot of cheese) and about 2 spoonfuls of sour cream. I was going to use Mexican shredded cheese (Monterey Jack and Cheddar) but we had an abundance of mozzarella, due to a miscommunication on a pizza night, so I used that instead. I don't think anyone could tell the difference.
Then take your pans and pour just enough sauce to cover the bottom (one green, one red)
I heated up our corn tortillas in the microwave to save time.  I wrapped them in paper towels and flipped them every 15 seconds until they were hot (just about one minute)  Then I held the (HOT!) tortilla (be careful!!) in my hand and filled it with the chicken and cheese mixture then rolled it up and placed it seam side down in the pan.
After I filled both pans, I opened up my second cans and poured the hot sauce on the red pan and the jalapeno sauce on the green pan. (next time more red sauce in the red pan, and green sauce in the green pan) until they are pretty much covered in sauce.  Then, I topped them with cheese. I used more mozzarella for the red enchiladas and some pepper jack for the greenish, for an extra kick.
Then I heated them up in the oven for 15 minutes at 400 degrees.
In the end they looked like this:

 Then I added a little sour cream and fresh tomato salsa to mine.  I cant handle the heat, so I needed something to tone them down a bit :)

It was a great night with great food!! I hope we really can make a tradition out of it!!

Time to get serious!!

I know I have been away for far too long. But, good news! I have tons of posts in store for you! I haven't been cooking a ton but in the last, ahem, 4 months...I've made some things I want to share!!

Things to look forward to...

  • Enchiladas!
  • Pies!
  • Whoopie pies!
  • Roasted chicken with pan fried potatoes
and... I guess thats it for now. But, I think its time I step up my blogging game.  So get ready!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

(mostly) homemade teriyaki chicken

Last night, I finally tried something new, for the first time in what feels like forever!!
Lately I've been really in the mood for teriyaki chicken and I finally decided I would just make it on my own.  And it was great!!  I kept it simple and stuck with just the chicken and the rice, but I made a teriyaki sauce to pour over everything at the end.  I meant to do some veggies, something quick, but I totally spaced it when I was at the store.  I am especially proud of this because I actually made rice.  I have the hardest time making rice.  Its always too hard or too mushy and I just couldn't seem to figure it out.  Everyone seems to have a different idea of how to make it but this time I just followed the bag and it came out fine.  It was a little stuck to the pan, but it wasn't terrible and the rest of the rice had great consistency.
I marinaded the chicken in a store bought teriyaki sauce that I had in the fridge already, then made the good sauce for pouring over it.  However, the sauce was so easy I think I'll make a double recipe and use part of it for a marinade. To cook the chicken I just grilled it on the grill pan.  I wanted to make sure to get a good brown on it for lots of flavor.
But now for the best part, the sauce! Like I mentioned before, I had a teriyaki sauce at home already but it had a very liquidy consistency and I was looking for something a little thicker. I had to substitute some ingredients because I didn't check a recipe before I went shopping, thus I didn't not have some of the things I needed.  Instead I used what was on hand and for the most part, I wouldn't change much from what I did.
In a small sauce pan I combined 1/2 cup of the teriyaki sauce I had in the fridge (the recipe calls for soy sauce and its what I will plan to use next time.) 1/4 water, 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons of brown sugar, 1/4 white sugar and about 1 1/2 teaspoons of garlic.  I mixed it over medium heat until all of the sugar was dissolved.  After that I turned the heat down and added a mixture of 1/2 tablespoon of cornstarch and 1 tablespoon of water  and let it simmer until it thickened.
After the rice was finished, I chopped up the chicken piled it all together and topped it off with some sauce!

The consistency was great.  The flavor was too, if just a little sweet.  As I said, next time I would like to use soy sauce, and perhaps a little more garlic.  I can't wait to try this again, with some veggies.  Snap peas, maybe some broccoli.  I'm looking forward to it!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Indoor Grilling!

When we first moved into our apartment, one of my aunts asked me if there was anything special we wanted or needed for our new place.  I thought about it for a while and decided I wanted a grill pan to use in the kitchen.  It's a little like a cast iron skillet, but with grooves. It looks like this:

I use it to cook EVERYTHING! I love the little lines it puts on everything.  It makes the best grilled cheeses, and your own gourmet panini like sandwiches.  Its my favorite tool in the kitchen. 
Last night I used it to cook some kebobs! I wanted some red meat, and needed some simple delicious veggies.  
I hit the store to get all the goodies: one ribeye (that I cut into cubes when I got home), yellow onion, red and yellow bell peppers, grape tomatoes and button mushrooms.  I also picked up a simple garlic and herb marinade that I put the cut up steak cubes into right away.  I ended up marinading it for about 4 hours, but you can do it for as long as you want to.  Later on, I cut up the veggies and tossed them in some oil, garlic salt and pepper.  Then I skewered it all up.  We just used wooden skewers, but I would love to get my hands on some of the nice metal ones.  

Then I fired up the grill pan, and did it up! I grilled them long enough to get a good grill mark on as much of the skewer as possible.  
I wish I had turned down the heat a little, and cooked them a little longer though.  Some of the veggies were a little too crispy.  But, all in all, it was tasty. I would like to try some different versions though, teriyaki maybe? or one with all veggies. The possibilities are endless!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Pizza pie? Dessert pie? Take your pick!

Hey guys!
Long time know blog, I know.  But, I haven't been the best at trying new things.  I do have a double dose for you today though!

Up first, extra, super delicious pudding pie!
A couple of weeks ago, I got a serious hankering for something sweet. With oreo crust.  This was just on the tails of fathers day, when Bryan brought me a slice of Kahlua Cheesecake (delicious, if you've never had it!) and I wanted more! So I went online in search of a tasty treat and came upon this super easy recipe (with lots of options to mix it up).
The first version I made was a cheesecake filling with chocolate topping. Later (for a  block party for 4th of July) I made one with chocolate filling and peanut butter topping.  The recipe and process stay the same, only the fillings change.  So there is real opportunity for changes and improvements!!
Start with 2 boxes of a pudding of your choice.  When you go to the store, often times there are two different box sizes, pick 2 smaller boxes.  Mix those two boxes with 1 1/2 cups milk until fully mixed.  Then add a container of cool whip (thawed) until smooth. Then add 3/4 cup of chocolate chips.  The original recipe called for chopped chocolate, but I just used chocolate chips, it was easier that way.  After its all mixed together, pour the filling into an oreo pie crust (I just bought mine pre-formed at the store).  In a small microwavable bowl, put 1/2 cup chocolate chips, 1/4 whipping cream and 1 tbsp of light corn syrup and micorwave it for about 30 seconds.  Mix it together until its smooth.  (it looks weird at first, but just keep mixing!) and pour that on top of the filling.  I used a spoon to just smooth it around and even it out.  Then pop it in the fridge (or freezer for a frozen treat!) Let it set (about 4 hours) slice, and serve!!

For the chocolate peanut butter version I just substituted chocolate pudding for cheesecake pudding and peanutbutter chips for chocolate chips.  For some reason, it was a little harder mix but it still came out!

Batting second, homemade spinach artichoke pizza!!
It was pizza night last week and I wanted something a little different.
Instead of traditional pizza, I opted for something a little more fancy (and really good!!) I used premade spinach artichoke dip (from, none other than, Fresh & Easy) rather than regular pizza sauce.  I topped it with shredded mozzarella, fresh tomatoes and a little shredded parmesan cheese. I baked it for the same amount of time, at the same temperature as last time and it ROCKED!! I debated getting a jar of marinated artichoke hearts to put on top, and while my pizza was delicious, I should have gotten the artichokes.  It would have kicked it up just a notch.  So, I'll keep that in mind for next time!

Until next time, happy eating!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Flavored Popcorn!

I know I've been MIA again.  I hadn't been cooking too much and then I got sick and the only thing I was doing was microwaving soup.  I tried to make soft pretzels on Sunday, but I failed so I'll share all about that when I try again tomorrow.  But no meals lately.  Today I was in need of a salty snack and decided on popcorn.  Then at the last minute I decided to spice it up a bit so I added some lemon pepper.
Sometimes I try to make homemade popcorn on the stove but I haven't figured out how to get it just right yet.  The directions seem super easy, 1-3 tablespoons of oil, 1/4 cup popcorn kernels.  Heat the oil on the stove in a big pot and while its heating up throw a kernel or two into the pot.  Heat the oil until the kernels pop then pour in the rest and cover the pot, leaving a crack to let the steam out.  Shake the pot over the stove until you hear 1-2 seconds between pops.
I can never seem to get the right amount of oil, or maybe the pot isn't big enough and I can't ever find the right lid for the pot I pick...so, most of the time, I still stick to microwave because it never fails!
Sometimes, regular old popcorn doesn't cut it and you have to mix it up sometimes! And there are so many great options for something a little different!  My go-to choice is always just a little garlic salt.  Sometimes seasoned salt.  You can do a little shaved chocolate, if you like that sweet and salty combo. It's always fun to try something new!
I'm snacking now and it's delicious!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Mama Mia!

Its pizza night over here!
Fresh & Easy ( I know, they should give me an endorsement already...) has this FANTASTIC pizza dough!
So, tonight I picked up all the fixin's (pepperoni for Bry, and tons of veggies for me) and we made some fabulous pizzas for dinner!
It's so easy, and so cheap!
First, I took out the dough (2 bags, for 2 separate medium sized pizzas) and let it sit out for 20 minutes. Then we covered our counter (and the floor, and Bryan from head to toe) in flour and flattened out our pizzas 'til we got them just right. (we tossed it in the air of course!) and then used some store bought sauce, tons and tons of cheese and topped them how ever we wanted to. Sometimes I use pasta sauce because then you can mess around with yummy flavors, like tomato basil or 4 cheese.
The pizza dough calls for the pizza to be cooked for 8-12 minutes, but we cook 2 at a time (and I like mine a little more done) so it usually takes about 20-30 minutes.  All in all, the whole process takes about 45 minutes, just about the same amount of time to order and get one delivered, and its just as good if not better.

before we baked them

after we baked them ( I left mine in a little too long because I was distracted blogging about my pizza!!)

Now we're all set! Bryan with his freshly poured beer, and me with my iced tea... Happy Saturday night!!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

I'm back!

Armed with Katy Perry and my trusty apron, I forced myself back into the kitchen tonight and tried something new!
A few weeks back, we tried a couple of different stuffed chicken breasts from F&E and I decided it couldn't really be that hard.  So, this morning I did a little research and found a recipe I thought sounded delicious, and not too difficult.  The result?

Mozzarella and roasted tomato and broccoli rabe stuffed chicken breast with roasted tomatoes and marsala sauce. (except I changed the marsala sauce to my own creation which became balsamic sauce.)

It was surprisingly easy.  I'm sorry I only have pictures of after product... I tend to be a little messy and all over the place when I cook.

Start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees F. Slice the tomatoes in to quarters and de-seed them. The recipe originally called for them to just be cut in half, I chose to cut them once more to make them manageable.  after roasting them,  I think it would be even better to dice them or cut them into chunks.  Roasting the tomatoes makes them very mushy and hard to deal with.  I think if they were diced, you could just scoop them onto the chicken with out as much of a hassle. Then cut the brocolli rabe into chunks. (broccoli rabe is kind of like a long broccoli. its also called broccolini.  It's a little more expensive, but it's my favorite veggie and  I think it's worth the extra couple bucks!) After the veggies are all chopped, I just tossed them in a little salt, pepper and olive oil and threw them on a cookie sheet and roasted them for about 10 minutes.  It doesnt take long for them to get just roasted enough.  In the mean time, I butterflied two chicken breasts, seasoned them and pounded them out...using an empty wine bottle since we don't have a mallet. (for easy clean up, and less salmonella, I covered the cutting board and the top of the chicken with saran wrap) Then I sliced the mozzarella and placed it down the middle of the pounded out chicken. Then I put the tomatoes and broccoli rabe on top of the mozzarella and rolled the chicken closed, securing it with toothpicks. (just don't forget to take the toothpicks out before you eat!!) and placed them on a foil covered cookie sheet, toothpick side down.
I did the potatoes the same old way, just with different potatoes.  Every few weeks, F&E changes the type of potatoes they carry, sometimes they are baby yukon golds or tiny white potatoes, right now they are summer medley potatoes.  They have a little bit of everything...red, yellow, white and these little purple potatoes.

This picture doesn't do the actual color justice. It's so pretty!

The recipe said to turn down the oven to 350 to cook the chicken for 40-50 minutes. However, I chose to cook the potatoes and the chicken at the same time, so I stuck them in the oven while it was still at 400 then turned it down to 375 once they were in the oven.
For the sauce, I chopped up half of a large shallot and browned it in a small frying pan then I added some balsamic dressing and just let it simmer.  It was a little acidic, so I added just a pinch of sugar. Word to the wise, cook this at the very end...I did it too early, and the balsamic caramelized and got a little lumpy...still tasted good, but it didn't look so nice. I didn't put it on the plate for the picture.

Ahh, it felt good to make something new.  I always get anxious and excited to try it. And then, of course tell you guys about it!
Question: does the format of my blog work? or would it be easier to list it more like a recipe? I have a hard time figuring out which is easier, since I rarely follow proportions in recipe. I'm more....free spirited haha. Let me know what you think!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


I suppose I've been feeling uninspired as far as cooking goes.  I'm always cooking the same things, or I haven't been cooking at all.  I've been feeling like I want to take a cooking class, but I tend to be a pretty picky eater so I don't want to take a class if I don't think I'll like the things on the menu and it will cost me money, so I really don't want to pay for it if it isn't something I'll use later on.  I spend a lot of time looking up recipes online, but for some reason nothing is sounding appealing. I wanted this blog to inspire me to cook new things, so I could share them with you.  Instead I feel like I've cooked the same things I always cook, and told you about them, and now I have nothing to share...

So I guess I'm in a cooking rut....any ideas??

Friday, April 29, 2011

I'm not neglecting to blog I swear....I'm just not cooking.  I should have set some kind of goal I guess....

Any ideas??

Monday, April 18, 2011

Two posts in one day??!!

So! I'm doing double duty today since I've been so bad about this blog! We haven't really cooked much since the dinner from my last post (because we were out of town visiting my family!) but I still have another recipe to share!
While we were gone, I had one of my favorite foods cooked in a way I hadn't ever thought of really. I had grilled avocado! I thought it sounded a little weird since most of the time I eat all things avocado when they're cold, but it was really good! All you have to do is slice them in half and take out the pit, then season them with a little olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and stick them sliced side down on the grill, for 5-10 minutes.  After they are done (when you can see good grill marks on them) fill them with a little salsa and sour cream and then eat! They are so good!! I was so pleasantly surprised!

Sorry guys!

I suppose I should actually tell you about that picture I posted! This last week was a little crazy and I forgot!
So! Last Monday night! I made those sirloins with twice baked potatoes and sauteed mushrooms.  For Christmas, Bryan got a bunch of Omaha steak products from his parents.  We only took half at first because our fridge is a little full.  We took hamburgers, sirloins and their twice baked potatoes.  The potatoes bit the dust pretty fast because we kept forgetting to defrost the steaks, so we used them with other things. Then we were told our other stuff would get eaten if we didn't take it soon! So we had to get eatin'! The steaks were so easy! We have a grill pan, so I just seasoned them really simply, with garlic salt and black pepper and cooked them in the pan.
The twice baked potatoes were so easy too! I heated the oven to 400 degrees and placed the potatoes right on the racks for 30 minutes.  Then I took them out using an oven mitt and used a fork to poke a few holes in the potatoes then I put them back in the oven, on the rack for 30 more minutes.  I took the potatoes out and turned the oven down to 350.  While the potatoes were cooking, I cooked up a few slices of fresh bacon to mix in the potato. (Sorry, we weren't exactly thinking low-cal, but you can of course use low fat versions of anything in the potato, and add just as much or as little as you would like) Then I sliced off the top of the potatoes, and scooped out the middle, leaving just enough to make a sturdy shell, and put it in a bowl . I seasoned the shell with salt and pepper and placed them on a cookie sheet I lined with foil.  I mixed in grated cheese, butter, sour cream and the bacon in with the scooped out insides and then stuffed it back into the shells filling them up with a little extra to make a mound on top.  I topped it with a little more cheese and then put them in the oven for about 20 more minutes.
While the potatoes were back in the oven for the last time, I sauteed up the mushrooms the same as last time, but I sliced the mushrooms, so there were more to go around.
Yum! Everything was so delicious!!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Pan grilled sirloins with sauteed mushrooms and homemade twice baked potatoes for dinner...but, more on that later, its time to eat!!
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Friday, April 8, 2011

Last night I tried something new! Recently I've been thinking it would be  nice to try a new pasta recipe, something a little creamier.  I tend to stick with something really simple, olive oil, tomatoes and garlic are a favorite.  I had made a really easy (and equally tasty) alfredo sauce, but that can be so heavy.  So I wanted something a little lighter but still flavorful.  I decided to look for something that involved mushrooms, after those yummy sauteed baby bellas on Monday, I couldn't wait to make something else with them.  I looked up a few recipes, but of course made up my own.
First, I browned some chicken with garlic salt and pepper and then baked it while I made the sauce.
For the sauce, I started by sauteeing sliced mushrooms in olive oil a little garlic salt and pepper until they were all tender.  Then I put the mushrooms aside in a bowl.  I sauteed a little garlic in olive oil to bring out the flavor then I put the mushrooms back in and added a little thyme.  Then I added a little heavy cream.  I wanted just cream, but the grocery store didn't have it.  The recipe called for 1/2 cup of white wine, but I forgot it at the store, and didn't have any handy. Without it, the sauce separated a little, but once I mixed it with the pasta, you couldn't tell.  It was DELICIOUS!! I don't  know what I was expecting, but it was great!! It was just creamy enough and it was still light.  It was great with the chicken! I cant wait to try it again, but this time with the wine!
I really need to work on coming up with titles for these posts.. haha

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Just another taco wednesday?

Tonight we had a little company, and ordering in for 4 people can get expensive. So I decided to go with tacos, even though its Wednesday.  Except this time we opted for ground beef instead of chicken (can you believe it?!) We haven't eaten yet, but they're done and I actually remembered to take pictures. (I thought maybe I'd try it out...) so, here are our taco fixin's!

We also have a little cheese and sour cream with flour tortillas. Dinner time!!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

So, I have to admit, I'm having trouble keeping up with this whole blogging thing.  I still haven't figured out if I'm blogging just about cooking, or food, or eating. But I want to be better, I promise!
So, I'm so obsessed with Fresh & Easy.  They're food is such good quality. They have the best pre-made food to just reheat.  But they also have really delicious pre-prepped food. Like pork tenderloin thats marinated or fajitas with marinated steak and chopped up veggies.  Last night we tried their Chicken Florentine. It was a boneless, skinless chicken breast stuffed with cheese, spinach and red bell peppers.  All I had to do was plop it on a baking sheet and stick it in the oven for 30 minutes at 375.  It got me thinking that it would probably be pretty simple to stuff my own chicken with whatever I fancied.  The Florentine was pretty good, but not as cheesy and flavorful as I thought it would be. I also like my chicken to get a pretty good brown on it, but since it was only baked, it was a little hard to get it just right.  I think I'm going to play with the idea of making different kinds of stuffed chicken...I'll let you know how it goes.
With it, I kept it pretty simple.  The chicken breasts were big, and also stuffed with goodies, (and for once I wasn't in the mood for potatoes) so I sauteed up some baby portabello mushrooms.  They were delicious! I just threw them in a pan with some olive oil, garlic salt, pepper and a dash of worcestershire sauce. (What a weird word!!) I thought about throwing some big portabellos on the grill pan, but I thought I would be able to get more flavor out of the babies.
It was a light and easy dinner that gave me some great ideas.  I hope something comes of it!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

I guess I'm on a roll today!

I was just texting a friend about cooking, and I remembered a delicious recipe I found online a few months back.
Chicken again...surprise surprise, you'd think I never eat anything else...I do, I swear!
This is a recipe for puff pastry wrapped chicken. However, instead of puff pastry, I use pilsbury crescent rolls, they give it just a little more flavor.  First, cook the chicken on the stove, I usually just season it with a little garlic salt and pepper. Cook it until its nearly cooked through. Then stick it in the fridge for about 15 minutes.  Preheat the oven as directed on the package of crescent rolls. Open them up, unroll them and cover it with a garlic cheese spread, like Allouette, or Roulet I think is the other one.  They have all kinds of flavors and now that I'm thinking about it, sundried tomato would probably be pretty good! After you have spread it on the crescent rolls break them into 4 pieces.  The rolls are broken up into triangles so it should be 2 triangles per piece, making a rectangle. Place one piece of chicken in the middle of each rectangle and wrap it around the chicken, pinching the ends together so its full wrapped.  Then place them on a cookie sheet and bake them for about 20 minutes, or until the outside is golden brown.  Pair with yummy vegetables.
I can't believe I forgot about this recipe, its so good!!
Clearly, I suck at this blogging thing.  I guess we also haven't been cooking as much lately.  This week, on Tuesday, Bryan's mom and brother came over for dinner.  Usually we go there, but we thought we would mix things up a bit.  I've never made dinner for them before, so I was really excited.  Since it was Tuesday, I decided to make chicken tacos! They are super easy, and equally delicious.  We love chicken, and cook with it a lot.  We shop at fresh and easy and they sell chicken escalopes, which is just chicken breasts cut in half.  I love cooking with these because the chicken is much thinner so it doesn't take as long to cook all the way through and at the same time you can still get a good brown on the out side.  I seasoned the chicken with fajita seasoning and cooked it on a grill pan on the stove.  Beforehand, I cut up all the toppings and put them aside.  We like to keep it pretty simple, tomatoes,lettuce, avocado when its in season (my favorite!) and sour cream and cheese. After the chicken is cooked through, I use a fork to shred it, rather than chopping it.  Its easier to make tacos with and it also seems to yield a lot more chicken.
Sometimes if we're looking for a little more flavor, after I cook the chicken I stick in in a frying pan and add some salsa and shredded cheese.  I heat it up until all of the cheese it melted and the chicken is coated in this deliciousness :)
Then we heat the tortillas, fill 'em up and enjoy!

I'll try to be better about blogging....I promise!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

to blog or not to blog? everyday that is..

I've been going back and forth about how I want to go about writing this blog.  Do I want to blog whenever I feel the need? Or only when I cook something? I've decided to go with, whenever I feel the need....

I really love potatoes. I think I could eat them everyday. Mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, french fries.  You name it.  I don't know how to cook potatoes very many ways, but I do make a mean roasted potato.  I think it might be my favorite side dish.   They are super easy and so delicious! I made them on Monday, using some of the russet potatoes I had leftover from the mashed potatoes I made last week. Usually I like to use smaller white or yellow potatoes that I get from Fresh & Easy, but last week I was shopping at Target and the big bag of russets was just so cheap! I couldn't pass it up!
Anyways, roasted potatoes! They're made pretty similarly to the cauliflower. I cut the potatoes into 2 inch pieces. In a large bowl, I mix enough olive oil, minced garlic, salt, pepper and thyme leaves (dried or fresh) to fully coat the potatoes.  I then bake them at 400 for about 45 minutes flipping them every 15 minutes until they are golden brown.  Although, I like mine a little crispy so I usually bake them a little longer.
Yum, now I want some roasted potatoes :)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Number One

Today I decided to start a blog based on my experience with learning to cook for myself.
Recently I reconnected with an old friend from high school.  I follow her blog where she poignantly chronicles her life with her husband and raising their adorable baby boy. I love reading her witty and honest recount of her day to day life, and I wrote to her to let her know.  In messaging back and forth, she suggested I start my own blog about cooking, something she admittedly struggles with, after i offered to share some of my successful recipes with her. so, here it goes!
I moved out of my parents house just over a year ago and all of the sudden I didn't have anyone to make me dinner every night! since then, I've had a great time messing around in a kitchen of my own, looking or new recipes online, borrowing recipes from home and making up a few of my own.   By now, we have a few go to recipes that we have from week to week, but every once in a while we like to mix it up a bit.
The first recipe I'm going to share was Monday nights dinner.

Balsamic chicken with cheddar mashed potatoes and roasted cauliflower.

I marinated 2 chicken breasts in balsamic vinaigrette dressing all day in the fridge and then i just sauteed them with a little olive oil on the stove.  For the potatoes, I peeled and cut 4 russet potatoes then chopped them up into about equal pieces.  I put them in a pot with water and let them boil until the potatoes fell apart when I stabbed them with a fork.  After I drained the potatoes, I put them in my mixer and whipped them with some butter and a little milk and about a cup of mixed shredded cheddar cheese. For the cauliflower, first in a bowl I put some olive oil, some minced garlic and a little lemon pepper (enough to coat all of the cauliflower).  Then chopped the head of cauliflower and mixed it in the bowl until all of the pieces were coated.  then I placed the cauliflower on a covered cookie sheet and cooked it at 400 degrees for 45 minutes turning the pieces every 15 minutes.

I'm not so much of a measurer... so I apologize for my lack of tablespoons and ounces.  I'll try to be better about it. Anyways, not all of my entries will be so long! but I hope you enjoy!

Thanks for reading!!