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Monday, October 29, 2012

Ranch Chicken Fingers

In August when I was visiting my son and family I made this for dinner one night.  I tried to help with the cooking while I was there.  We forget how busy life can be when trying to work and raise children.  I give my children a lot of credit for all they do.  Times sure have changed from my day of raising the kids.  Many of the young couples of today really work as a team sharing the responsibilities and chores.  Ok enough rambling..back to chicken.  My grandchildren requested I make this for dinner.  I tried something new and it sure gave lots of flavor to and old favorite.  These are easy and oh so yummy.

3-4 boneless skinless chicken breast (you could use breast tenders)
2 eggs
1/4 cup ranch dressing (homemade or store bought)
1/2 - 1 cup AP flour
2-3  heaping TBL cornstarch
salt and pepper
oil for frying
wax paper

Cut chicken into strips the size you want.  Salt and pepper.  In a bowl whisk the eggs and ranch dressing.  Now for the no extra dishes part.  I put my flour on wax paper and also have a piece of wax paper to set them on to rest before frying.  Mix the flour and cornstarch and spread out on wax paper.   Dip the chicken pieces into the flour, then egg and then back into the flour, set aside (you have to let them rest so they get kind of gooey)  Just before frying you will dust a tiny bit of flour on them and then into the oil.  Cook until golden brown.  Another tip, do not try to turn them until they are starting to brown around the edges.  The flour will stick to the pan if they are not ready to be moved, resulting in the breading coming off. 
Remove and drain on paper towel,  sprinkle with a little salt. Serve with a ranch dip or drizzle with honey.  Enjoy!!
Thanks for taking time your busy day to stop by.  Have a wonderful day and Remember to Find the time to do ALL the things YOU love.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Pear Apple Coffee Cake

My oldest grandson Josh was home on leave and one night he requested German food.  My daughter asked if I would make the dessert so this is what I made.

2 granny smith apples (sliced)
2 Bartlett pears (sliced)
2 TBL butter
2-3 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp fresh ground nutmeg
pinch of salt
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/4 cup of sugar

1 1/4 cup of AP flour
1/4 tsp slat
3/4 TBL yeast
2 1/4 TBL butter, melted
½ egg (whisk....use other 1/2 to
3 oz hot tap water

In a skillet cook the apples with the other ingredients, side aside to cool.

Whisk together the first 3 ingredients
In another bowl whisk the next 3 ingredients, add to the flour mixture and knead for 3 minutes.   (dough will be sticky and soft)  Cover and let rest for 20 minutes.

On floured surface, roll out dough to a 13x15 triangle.  Transfer to a parchment lined cookie sheet , cut strips along each side, leave a good space in the middle for your filling.  Pile on filling  (I also added 1/4 cup of fine chopped walnuts on top of the filling, you can also add raisins or dried  cranberries ) and then fold up end and then do a criss cross til you reach the other end, before folding the last strips fold up end then do the criss cross.
Cover with plastic wrap and put in refrigerator for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 375°
Make Strudel for top

1 1/2 TBL butter
3 TBL AP flour
1/8 cup powdered sugar
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup slivered almonds or fine chopped almonds
Combine dry ingredients then cut in butter to make coarse crumbs.
Brush cake with rhe remaining ½ of egg, then top with strusel.  Bake at 375 for 15 minutes, then turn down oven to 350° and bake for an additional 15 minutes.
Top with vanilla glaze
1/8 cup powdered sugar
dash of vanilla
1-2 tsp water
Mix to make glaze
in small bowl put sugar and dash of vanilla, add small amount of water at first, stir, add more is needed.  You need to get it to the consistency of a slight running mixture.  Drizzle over top.

 Thanks for stopping by, have a GREAT day and Remember to Find the Time to Do ALL the things YOU love.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Homemade Cannelloni

This is what we had at the family dinner.  YUM!  They are filled with meat and cheese.  One is braised beef (above) the other had braised pork.  The meat cooked this way just falls apart.  I have never made them this way,  I always just made them filled with cheese.  The pasta is homemade also, I used my normal recipe which I have listed below.

Pasta Dough:
2 cups AP flour
2 eggs
1/4 cup of vegetable oil
3 TBL water

In a food processor pulse the flour a couple of times to put air into it.  Put the eggs, water in a measuring glass and whisk until incorporated, with processor running, slowly add this mixture through the feed tube, run until dough forms a ball and comes away from the sides.  Remove, knead a couple of times then wrap in plastic and let rest for 1 hour.

Cheese/Meat Filling:
12 oz. ricotta cheese
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup mozzarella cheese, grated
1 egg
2-3 TBL fresh parsley chopped
1-2 TBL fresh basil, chopped
2 cups shredded meat (either pork or beef)
5-6 slices provolone cheese
salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients and set aside

Roll you pasta out or put through pasta making machine and make lasagna sheets then cut them into 6 inch pieces. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil,  Cook for about 4 minutes, until they float to the top.  Fresh pasta does not take as long a boxed pasta so be careful not to over cook.  Drain and put in an ice cube and water bath to stop the cooking.

In a 9x13 pan put a small amount of sauce on the bottom.  Fill your cut, cooked pasta pieces with cheese meat mixture, placing the mixture at one end and then roll up and place seam side down.  Cover with sauce and put some mozzarella and provolone cheese on top.  Bake for about 25 minutes until, hot and bubbly and cheese has melted.  Just as you serve grate some fresh Parmesan cheese on top. This is a hearty dish and all you need to serve with it is some nice home made Italian bread and a salad.
Thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful day and Remember to Find the Time to do All the things You Love.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Cloned Entenmanns Cheese Filled Crumb Coffee Cake

 Being from NY there are certain things you just crave at times, this is one of those things.  You can find this here in KS but not on a regular basis.  Not to mention the cost, you would think there were flakes of gold in the recipe.  Since I've retired I really enjoying cooking and baking.  I was searching for a cheese type coffee cake when I found this.  

WOW I was so happy, almost did a happy dance.  I will say this is so close to the store one, but it still needs more cheese in the middle.  So will work on that. 
Adapted from here

Homemade Entenmann’s Cheese Filled Crumb Coffee Cake: (makes 2 but I think it would also make 3 good size ones.  you could do different fruits)
4-4 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup milk
6 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup warm water
1 1/2 tsp yeast
2 large eggs, beaten
1/2 Tbsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
Combine the milk and butter in a microwave safe bowl and heat until butter is melted.  In a large mixing bowl, combine the milk mixture with the sugar and salt and let cool.  In a small bowl, combine the water and yeast and let foam. When the milk mixture is cooled a bit, add the eggs and yeast (the point of the cooling is to not kill the yeast, so don’t let it get cold).  With a dough hook, mix in the flour.  (If using a wooden spoon and elbow grease, mix in the flour and then knead on a floured surface until dough is smooth and soft – about 5-10 minutes).  Cover and let rise until double in bulk; about 1-1 1/2 hours.  After rising, punch down and divide in half.  Roll out on a large jelly roll pan to fit the length of the pan and almost the width.  Spread the filling down the middle of each cake and either fold over the outer halves but leave a space down the center over the filling. Sprinkle the streusel equally on top of the two coffee cakes.  Cover and let rise another 20 minutes and preheat your oven  to 375 degrees.  Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.  When cooled, dust with powdered sugar.  I baked one of these and put the other in the freezer with cooking it.  I wrapped it in parchment paper then aluminum foil. 
the filling:
1 8 ounce brick cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/3 cup flour
Mix all ingredients until smooth.
the streusel:
3/4 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
4 Tbsp butter
1/2 tsp cinnamon
In a bowl, mix the streusel ingredients with a pastry blender or fork until crumbly.
Sure hope you try this, you won't be disappointed.  Thanks for stopping by and have a wonderful week.  Always remember to Find the Time to Do All the Things YOU love.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Ricotta Cookies

These cookies are from Lidia's site, we had a family dinner and these were 1 of the desserts.  My daughter made Tarimasu which I will post later.  As you can guess we had Italian.  I made home made Cannelloni with meat and cheese filling.  Two trays were with beef and two were made with Pork 
I must say these cookies are really good, light and so tasty.  I will make them again and again.  Oh yes one other thing they go together very quickly.  A big plus.

2¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch kosher salt
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 large eggs
8 ounces fresh ricotta, drained
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

For the glaze
2 teaspoons lemon zest, plus** 1/4 cup lemon juice
**2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl, and set aside.
**those  two starred items I used less than a 1/4 cup of juice and 1 1/2 cups of sugar, it made more than enough
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Cream the sugar and butter in a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium, and crack in the eggs one at a time, beating well between additions. Plop in the ricotta, vanilla, and lemon zest, and beat to combine. Add the flour mix, and beat on low until just combined, but do no over mix.

Drop the dough in heaping tablespoons onto the baking sheets. Place in oven, and bake, rotating pans halfway through the baking time, until the cookies are puffed, golden, and cooked all the way through, about 20 to 22 minutes. Remove from oven, and cool on wire racks.

When the cookies are completely cool, make the glaze. In a bowl, whisk together the confectioner’s sugar and lemon juice to make a smooth glaze. Adjust the consistency with a little water or more confectioners’ sugar to make the glaze thick enough to stick to the cookies when dipped. Hold each cookie with two fingers, then dip the top of the cookies in the glaze and let dry on racks until all are done. Let dry for 2 hours before storing.
 Thanks for stopping by.  Have a great day and Remember to Find the Time to DO all the Things YOU love.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Pineapple Pound Cake

Another great dessert and yummy tasting cake.  When making this cake I discovered I didn't have a tube pan.  I know I owned one, but sure couldn't find it.  So that has gone on my list of things to buy, oh fun a new toy. :)  This recipe called for a tube pan, but as I said "no can find" so I used my bundt pan and it turned out fine.  I make this cake for our weekly game and served the BLT Puff Pastry.  Another BIG YUM. 

Pineapple pound cake

    1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple, undrained, divided
    1/2 cup vegetable shortening
    1 cup butter or margarine (2 sticks)
    2 cups granulated sugar
    6 large eggs
    3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/4 cup milk
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/4 cup butter or margarine
    1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar

Put 3/4 cup of undrained pineapple with its juice in a small bowl; set aside. Drain remaining pineapple and measure 1 cup of drained crushed pineapple; set aside.

Cream shortening, butter, and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition. Sift flour and baking powder together; add to creamed mixture, 1 large spoonful at a time, alternately with milk. Add vanilla; stir in 3/4 cup undrained pineapple with juice and blend well. Pour batter into a well greased and floured 10-inch tube pan. Place in cold oven. Turn oven to 325̊ and bake for 1 1/2 hours, or until top springs back when touched lightly with finger. Let pineapple pound cake stand for few minutes in pan. Run knife around edges to loosen and remove pineapple cake carefully to a rack. Combine butter, confectioners' sugar, and about 1 cup drained pineapple. Pour pineapple sauce over cake while still hot.
 Please give this a try.  Thanks for stopping by.  Have a wonderful day and Remember to Find the Time to Do ALL the things YOU Love.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Mexican Orange Sugar Cookie

This is the other cookie I made for my Marine grandson, Josh.  It is an easy recipe and even though I messed up the recipe they were still pretty good.  Next time I will add more orange zest, I didn't feel that they had enough orange flavor.  HMMMM wonder if that is because I put the cinnamon in the dough.  I'll have to try these again and see.

  adapted from here

1 1/4 cups vegetable shortening*
1/2 cup granulated sugar
 , divided
1/2 teaspoon ground anise seeds
1 egg

1/8 cup freshly-squeezed orange juice
3 cups AP flour
1/2 tablespoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
 1 1/2teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 TBL orange zest

* Butter may be substituted for the vegetable shortening.


In a large bowl using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat vegetable shortening, 1/4 cup sugar, and anise seeds until creamy. Add egg beat well. Add orange juice and continue beating until light and fluffy.
In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, cream of tartar and salt. Gradually beat flour mixture into shortening mixture to form dough. Remove dough from bowl and knead dough on a lightly floured surface. Form dough into disc, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or silpat.
In a small bowl, combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and cinnamon; set aside.
  Roll out dough on lightly floured surface to 1/4-inch thick. Cut with cookie cutters and place on prepared cookie sheets. Gently press any remaining dough trimmings together, re-roll, and cut out more cookies.
Bake cookies approximately 8 to 10 minutes or until light brown. Remove from oven. When still hot, dip in the cinnamon/sugar mixture.
Makes about 3 1/2dozen cookies.
I didn't freeze any of these but don't see why you couldn't.  
Thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful day and Remember to Find the time to Do All the things YOU Love.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Chewy Chocolate Mint Cookies


I made these cookies for my grandson Josh, who is a Marine.  We are soooooo proud of him.  My daughter tries to send him a box every month with his favorite cookies and I always send him new recipe cookies so maybe he can add some to his list.  Last time I sent the Potato Chip cookies.   The other cookie I made will follow it's a Mexican Orange Sugar Cookie. Also I made these some with the nuts and some without.  There are times Josh is not crazy about nuts in cookies so thought I'd send him ones without.


Chewy Chocolate Mint Cookies

2 1/2 cps AP flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) melted butter, slightly cooled
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 lg eggs
1 10.5 oz pkg andies mint chips
Optional 1 1/2 cup walnuts or pecans chopped

Preheat oven to 375F degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment or silicone liners. In a medium bowl combine the four, baking soda and salt and set aside.  In a large bowl, stir the cooled melted butter and sugars with a wooden spoon until creamy.  Add the eggs and vanilla beating until smooth.  Stir in the flour mixture just until incorporated.  Stir in the chocolate morsels and nuts (if using).  Place the cookie dough in the refrigerator for 10 minutes (or up to 6 hours) to let the dough firm up.  Drop by heaping tablespoons onto lined cookie sheets, leaving about 3 inches between cookies. I used my small ice cream scoop.  Bake for about 8 to 10 minutes or until golden around the edges but still soft on top.  Cool on baking sheets 5 minutes then transfer cookies to wire racks to cool completely or enjoy warm.  This recipe made 60 cookies.  You can also freeze these, just scoop them onto a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and set in freezer for a couple of hours.  When frozen put in plastic bag and write on the outside what they are with the cooking temperature and time.  That way you could have cookies whenever you like.  I froze 16 of these so when my friends come next time I don't have to worry about dessert.

I must admit I didn't put them in the refrigerator.  I think I was at a point that I wanted to be done because I had just made a batch of  Mexican Orange Sugar Cookies and messed that recipe up too. I added the cinnamon to the flour mixture instead of saving it for the sugar topping.  Oh well, we all have those times I think. They both came out good but it just makes me so irritated when I do things like that.
Thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful day and Remember to Find the time to Do ALL the things YOU Love.

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