I love my followers! Join us, and I will follow back! Making new friends is so much fun!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Mexican Bean Dip


Here is another man-friendly dip for Super Bowl Sunday!

Ingredients:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 can refried beans
1 small onion, chopped
1 medium can chopped green chilies, drained
Kraft sharp cheddar, shredded
Chopped tomatoes, onion, black olives and green onions for garnish, if desired
(Add a layer of chili, if desired)
Instructions:
Layer ingredients in oven proof dish or pan (9x13 is too big.) in order listed.  Bake at 350* until cheese is melted, and dip is hot.  Garnish, if desired. Serve with tortilla chips.
Mix it up Monday
Tea Time Tuesday
Table Top Tuesday
Tea Party Tuesday
Wow Us Wednesdays
Thriving On Thursdays
Full Plate Thursday
Seasonal Sundays
Rock and Share
Seasonal Inspiration
Your Cozy Home

Monday, January 30, 2012

Mexican Dip


Super Bowl is this Sunday!  I am always looking for good snacks to serve.  I have used several layered Mexican dips over the years, but this is the best one I have tried.  Perfect blend of textures and flavors...delicious!

Ingredients:
4 medium ripe avocados
2 TBS lemon juice
½ tsp. salt         ¼ tsp. pepper
1 C sour cream
½ C mayo
1 pkg Taco Seasoning Mix
2 10 oz. cans jalapeno bean dip
3 green onions, chopped
3 medium tomatoes, chopped and drained
2  3½ oz. cans sliced ripe olives
Kraft shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese

Instructions:
Mix avocado with lemon, salt and pepper.  In separate bowl, mix sour cream, mayo and taco seasoning.
Layer:
In 9x13 baking dish, spread bean dip on bottom
Layer avocado next.
Layer cream mixture
Sprinkle with onions, tomatoes, and olives.
Cover with cheese
Serve with tortilla chips
Mix it up Monday
Tea Time Tuesday
Table Top Tuesday
Tea Party Tuesday
Wow Us Wednesdays
Thriving On Thursdays
Full Plate Thursday
Seasonal Sundays
Rock and Share
Seasonal Inspiration
Your Cozy Home



Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Sausage and Red Peppers with Pasta

I have cooked this dish for years, but not very often.  Kind of an out of sight, out of mind thing, I guess.  My guys really enjoy it when I do serve it.  It is a hearty pasta dish, and a very good choice in cold weather.  Add bread, a green salad, and your favorite wine for a satisfying meal!

Ingredients:
2 TBS olive oil
5-6 links Italian Sausage (I use hot)
1 C onion, finely chopped
3 sweet red peppers, cut into medium slices
1 C red wine
1  28 oz.can Italian plum tomatoes
1 C water
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp fennel seeds
1/4 C Italian parsley
4 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper, to taste
dried red pepper flakes, optional

Instructions:
Put olive oil in pot; prick sausages with fork, and brown in oil until done, about 10-15 minutes.  Remove sausage from pot.  Add onions and cook, covered, about 10 minutes.  Add peppers and garlic, cook uncovered another 3 minutes, stirring often.  Put in tomatoes, wine, water and spices.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer about 10 minutes more.  Meanwhile, slice sausage into 1/2" slices, add to sauce and simmer another 20 minutes, adding parsley in last 5 minutes.  Serve with ziti or rigatoni.  Sprinkle with freshly grated parmigiana.
Wow us Wednesdays
Thriving on Thursday
Full Plate Thursday
Foodie Friday

Monday, January 23, 2012

Morton's Steak House Iceberg Blue Cheese Wedge and Boompa's Grilled Rib-Eye Steaks

It was warm here today, so the hubby and I decided to grill some boneless rib-eye steaks for dinner, and I made a wedge salad using Morton's Steak House Blue Cheese Dressing, with a few modifications.  This dressing is simply delicious, and that's all there is to it!

INGREDIENTS:
1 head iceberg lettuce
6 slices crispy bacon, crumbled in large pieces
1 small onion, chopped
1-2 ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 1/2 C Morton's Blue Cheese Dressing (below)


Morton's Blue Cheese Dressing Ingredients
1 C real mayonnaise
1/2 C plus 1 tbs sour cream
2 TBS buttermilk, add more to get desired consistency
1/2 tsp Durkee Famous Sauce*
1/4 tsp seasoned salt
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 C Maytag blue cheese, crumbled

INSTRUCTIONS:
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise and sour cream. Add the buttermilk, Durkee sauce, and seasoned salt. Whisk until well mixed. Season to taste with salt and pepper and whisk again.  Using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the blue cheese. Transfer to a storage container with a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate for at least 1 day and up to 4 days.

SALAD
Remove any wilted outside leaves from lettuce head. Strike bottom of lettuce head on a flat surface to loosen core. Pull core out. Place lettuce head on cutting board and slice in half from top to bottom. Slice into four wedges. Put wedges in a zip lock bag, and place in crisper drawer of your refigerator for about 2 hours. When ready to serve, ladle dressing across wedge so that it runs over the side. Sprinkle chopped onion, bacon pieces, and chopped tomatoes over the top of the salad.
*Durkee Famous Sauce is sold in many supermarkets. It's a vinegar-flavored mustard-mayonnaise type of sauce.

Boompa’s Grilled Steaks
Here is how my husband, known as Boompa to our great-grandson, makes his steaks.  Black Angus beef is the most flavorful, so that is what we always use. They are delicious!  No kidding!
               
 Ingredients:
Black Angus Rib Eye steaks (bone in if available)
Olive Oil
Garlic salt
Tony Chacheres Cajun Seasoning
McCormick Spicy Montreal Steak Seasoning
Worcestershire Sauce
Lite soy sauce
Instructions:
Rub steaks with olive oil on both sides.  Sprinkle both sides lightly with garlic salt and Cajun seasoning.  Add Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce to taste.  Liberally sprinkle on the  Montreal seasoning. Place steaks in refrigerator for about 1-2 hours.  When ready to cook, put steaks on hot grill to sear about 3 minutes per side. Then lower heat a bit, and grill to desired doneness.

I am sharing this with Tea Party Tuesday , Mix it up Monday , Table Top Tuesday , Wow Us Wednesday

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Bananas Foster French Toast

Sunday morning!  A perfect time to serve this yummy French Toast.  The recipe comes from Tessa of Handle the Heat
Ingredients:
French Toast:

2 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
6 thick slices bread
butter for frying
Bananas Foster Topping:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 bananas, sliced
pinch cinnamon
Instructions:Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.   In a large shallow bowl or dish whisk together eggs, milk, salt, cinnamon, and allspice. Soak bread slices in egg mixture, allowing to absorb as much liquid as possible. While bread is soaking, heat a large skillet or griddle on medium heat. Melt butter in pan and brown the bread slices, working in batches if necessary. Brown for about 3 minutes per side, or until lightly golden. Place slices on a baking sheet and finish cooking in preheated oven for 12-15 minutes, or until slices have a desired brown color.  While the french toast is in the oven, prepare the bananas foster topping. In a small skillet, melt the butter. Add the brown sugar and stir until dissolved into butter. Add banana slices to pan, stirring so they are covered in caramel sauce. Sprinkle a pinch of cinnamon. Bananas are done when they are warmed through. Pour bananas foster mixture over French Toast.
Sharing this with Seasonal Sundays

Friday, January 20, 2012

Pineapple Chess Pie

I love Chess pie because it is a tasty, quick dessert you can whip up in a hurry, with ingredients you have on hand!  I most often make lemon..because I am a lemon dessert addict who seriously needs intervention..but I like this one a LOT also!

Ingredients:
1 1/3 C sugar
1 TBS fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. vanilla
3 eggs
¼ C butter, melted
8oz. can crushed pineapple with juice
1 refrigerated pie crust, partially baked

Instructions:
Bake pie crust at 425* for about 10 minutes.  Melt butter; add sugar, eggs, lemon juice and vanilla; beat well.  Add crushed pineapple and juice and mix. Pour into pie crust and bake at 375* until filling is just set.  Good pie!

I am sharing this with Sweets for a Saturday. and Foodie Friday.



Thursday, January 19, 2012

Full Plate Thursday

I was featured on Full Plate Thursday this week.  Thank you so much Miz Helen's Country Cottage!!!!

Lemon Angel Wings

This recipe and photo was in Taste of Home.  I am a self-confessed lemon dessertaholic, so I just had to have these!  They are especially good with a nice cup of tea!

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 C cold butter, cubed
1/2 C sour cream
1 tsp. lemon peel, grated
10 TBS sparkling sugar, divided (Wilton)

Place flour in a large bowl; cut in butter until crumbly. Stir in sour cream and lemon peel until well blended. Place on a piece of waxed paper; shape into a 4 1/2"  inch square. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Cut dough into four equal 2 1/4" squares. Place one square on a piece of waxed paper sprinkled with 2 TBS. sugar. Cover with another piece of waxed paper. (Keep remaining squares refrigerated.) Roll out dough into a 12 inch x 5 inch rectangle, turning often to coat both sides with sugar.  Lightly mark center of 12 inch side. Roll up jellyroll style to the center mark, starting with a short side and peeling paper away while rolling. Repeat rolling from other short side, so the two rolls meet in the center and resemble a scroll. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate. Repeat with remaining squares, using 2 tablespoons sugar for each. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Unwrap dough and cut into ½ inch slices; dip each side in remaining sugar. Place 2" apart on foil lined baking sheets. Bake at 375 degrees for 14 minutes or until golden brown. Turn cookies over; bake 5 minutes longer. Watch carefully, as they may not need this much time, depending on your oven. Place on wire raks to cool.

Sharing with Tea Party Tuesday

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Oven Roasted Garlic Brussels Sprouts


You can reduce or increase the amount you want to make, just use an appropriately sized baking dish, and adjust garlic and seasonings.

2 lb Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved 
5 cloves garlic, minced fine or pressed through a garlic press
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Crispy Bacon to garnish, if desired.

Move oven rack to the upper third and preheat to 425 degrees.

In a 9x13 inch baking dish, toss together Brussels sprouts, garlic, water, oil, salt and pepper and spread out in a single layer.

Bake for 40 minutes, tossing once, about 25 minutes into cooking time. Remove from oven and toss Brussels sprouts in the pan scraping up brown bits into the sprouts. Garnish with crispy bacon.

Adapted from www.cookingphotographer.com
Sharing with Foodie Friday

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Easy Chicken and Dressing Casserole


This dish is perfect for a night that you need dinner in a hurry, or are just too tired to make something complicated and time consuming.  It is a tasty dish.

Ingredients:

1 chicken, cooked, skinned and deboned
2 C chicken stock
1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
1 can Cream of Celery Soup
8oz. Pepperidge Farm Seasoned Stuffing
1/2 C butter, melted
½ C onion, diced
½ C celery, diced 

Instructions:
Cook chicken, then bone and skin it, cut in bite sized pieces.  Mix stock and soups.  Mix stuffing and melted butter; saute celery and onion until soft, then add all ingredients together.  Spread into casserole dish.  Layer chicken on top, and then pour soup gravy over top.  Bake at 350* 30-45 minutes.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Elvis' Hunk-a Hunk-a Fried Banana Peanut Butter Sandwich

Since I have had a septiman horribilis...a week so bad it has to be described in Latin, I thought I would start this one with something fun.  For some reason, this crazy sandwich popped into my head.  We used to live in Memphis, where Elvis was indeed The King.  When he was home, he was constantly doing random acts of kindness for people he didn't know.  After his death, the recipe for one of his favorite foods was published in the local newspaper.  His mother, and his beloved cook, Mrs. Langston used to make these for him.  There is also a version with bacon...but we won't go into that!  Here it is...thank ya, thank ya very much!

Ingredients:
2 large ripe bananas, mashed
1 stick of butter
1 C smooth peanut butter
6 slices white bread, lightly toasted

Instructions:
Peel and mash bananas, then mix thoroughly with peanut butter.  Spread evenly on lightly toasted bread.  Melt butter in skillet, and lightly brown sandwiches on both sides.
Sharing with Tea Party Tuesday

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Easy New Orleans Style King Cake

This is an easy version of the New Orleans King Cake adapted from Southern Plate.  As you can see, it has changed a lot from the French Galette des Rois the French made centuries ago.  The bean, or more frequently used plastic baby, are still added to the cake.  The cakes are eaten from Epiphany to Mardi Gras.


Ingredients:
For the King Cake:
             1 roll frozen bread dough, thawed
  • Filling:8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • For the Icing:
  • 1-1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk (more if needed but stir this amount first, you’ll be surprised how far this goes!)
  • 1 tsp clear butter or vanilla flavoring
Instructions
  1. On floured surface, roll out your dough to a rectangle of about 10 x 18 inches. It doesn’t have to be exact, close enough works!
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, and extract and mix until creamy and well blended. Spread over dough to within an inch of each side. Roll up longways (to make a long log) and brush the final edge with water before pressing it into the log to seal.
  3. Take log and form into a circle, pressing the ends into each other and brushing with water if needed to seal together. Spray top lightly with cooking spray and cover with plastic wrap. Set in warm place to rise for 45 minutes to an hour.
  4. Remove plastic wrap and bake in 350 degree oven for 30-35 minutes. Allow to cool.
  5. Mix confectioner’s glaze and drizzle over top of cake with a spoon. Immediately sprinkle yellow, green and purple sprinkles over glaze. Allow to sit until glaze hardens.

Hearty Split Pea Soup

I don't like cold weather at all, but I do love cooking and eating soups and stews to warm from the inside out.  This is one of my personal favorites.

Ingredients:
Leftover ham shank bone, with some meat on it
1 bag split peas, rinsed and picked over
4 medium potatoes, cubes
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, grated on large side of grater
1 box Chicken stock
1 TBS. bacon grease
1 bay leaf

Instructions:
Saute vegetables in bacon grease until soft, add ham bone and chicken stock.  Cook for about 15 minutes, then add washed split peas and bay leaf.  Simmer until peas are done, adding water if necessary, so soup doesn't get too thick.  I do not strain this soup, because we love the pieces of potato and chunks of ham in it. Yum!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Chicago Style Mostacolli

When we lived in Chicago, we ate this often.  Either I would make it at home, or pick up take out.  A very simple, very flavorful pasta!


Ingredients:
1 box Mostacolli, cooked al dente per package instructions
1# ground chuck
3 sweet or hot Italian sausage, removed from casing
1 large jar Prego with mushrooms
1 8oz. can tomato sauce
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 bay leaves
2 TBS olive oil
½ C red wine
1/2  C water
½ C shredded parmesan cheese
½ C shredded mozzarella cheese

Instructions:
Brown meats in olive oil; add garlic, Prego, tomato sauce, bay leaves, wine and water.  Simmer about 1 hour.  Cook pasta using instructions on package for al dente.  Drain pasta; mix with meat sauce and cheeses.  Put in baking dish and sprinkle with both kinds of cheese.  Bake at 350* until bubbly.  

Bacon, Egg, and Swiss Cheese Brunch Casserole

This is a less common version of an overnight brunch casserole.

Ingredients:
White loaf bread
½# Kraft sharp cheddar, shredded
½# Swiss cheese, shredded
1pkg. bacon, fried and cut in bite sized pieces
½ tsp. salt and ½ tsp. pepper

Instructions:
Remove crust from bread.  Place in bottom of 9x13 pan, fill in spaces.  Sprinkle cheeses over bread, then crispy bacon over cheese.  Beat eggs, and milk and seasonings, pour over other ingredients.  Refrigerate overnight.  Bake at 350* for 45 minutes.  An almost instant dish for a crowd!




Friday, January 13, 2012

Strawberry "Mimosa"

This makes a tasty, and pretty drink.  It is perfect for a romantic Valentine's Day brunch with your sweetheart!                     
                                                                                
Ingredients:
1 bag frozen strawberries, thawed (if not sweetened, add 4 TBS sugar)
1 bottle champagne

Instructions:
Put berries and sugar in blender and blend until creamy.  Put 2oz. in bottom of champagne flute, and top with 4oz. champagne, or to taste.

Faux Pate'

I know, I know...not everyone likes Pate'...but I love it!  This is a very mild version, and when I serve it at parties, it disappears rather quickly.  Come on, don't be afraid...give it a try!


Ingredients:
8 oz. Brunsweieger
3 oz. room temperature cream cheese
1 TBS finely minced onion
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. dry sherry
3 drops Tabasco

Instructions:
Mix all ingredients until Smooth. Refrigerate until serving.  Best with crostini or crackers and cheeses.  Garnish with finely minced chives or parsley.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Galette des Rois

This is the French ancestor of the New Orleans King Cake.  French families ate it on Epiphany... January 6th.  A fava bean was placed in the cake, and all the family members took a slice.  If you found the bean, you were declared King or Queen for the day.  This tradition is still carried through in today's King Cakes...but usually, if you get the bean or the commonly used plastic baby, you host the next gathering.  King Cakes are eaten until Fat Tuesday...Mardi Gras.  I think the paper crown makes a pretty presentation.

Ingredients:
1 tsp. almond extract

2 sheets ready made puff pastry
1 C ground blanched almond
1 C softened butter
3/4 sugar
3 eggs
1 yolk
Instructions:
Mix the butter and the sugar until the mix whitens, then add the beaten eggs and the ground almond and extract, mix well.
Pour the mix in the middle of the first sheet of puff pastry. Lay the second sheet on top, and roll the sides of the sheets together towards the inside to seal the galette.
With a knife, draw diagonal lines in both direction (so that they cross each other) to create the pattern. Then with a brush, spread the beaten yolk on the whole cake to give it a golden color.
Put in an oven for 30 minutes at 325 degrees, being careful not to burn.  Serve hot, but it is also very good  cold,  too. 
I am sharing this with Tea Party Tuesday and Foodie Friday
and Sweets for Saturday and Seasonal Sundays

Bananas Foster Ice Cream Cake

I was looking through my recipe files this morning, and found this cake and photo from Taste of the South Magazine 2006.  I made it for a birthday brunch for my son and granddaughter...it was delicious, and made a beautiful presentation.  Perfect for a special occasion.

Ingredients:

  1. 1 (18.25-ounce) package butter-recipe cake mix
  2. 3 eggs
  3. 1/2 cup butter
  4. Water as needed
  5. 1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted
  6. 1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream, softened
  7. 2 to 3 bananas, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch slices
  8. 1 recipe of Caramel Rum Sauce (recipe below)
  1. To assemble cake, place 1 cake layer, smooth-side up, on a cake plate. Top with 1/4 of softened ice cream, smoothing surface with a knife or spatula. Repeat with remaining two layers of cake. (For best results, place cake in freezer for 20 to 30 minutes after adding each layer of ice cream.) After third layer of ice cream, arrange small scoops of ice cream on top around edge of cake. (Scoops should be touching). Return to freezer until serving time.
  2. To serve, pile banana slices in center of cake, and pour 3/4 cup cooledCaramel Rum Sauce over bananas. (Rum sauce will run down sides of cake between ice-cream scoops.) Serve remaining rum sauce with cake as an accompaniment.
Caramel Rum Sauce:
Ingredients:
1/4 C butter
1 C brown Sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 C rum, plus 2 TBS water

I am sharing this with Full Plate Thursday and Foodie Friday  

Marinated Vegetable Salad for Winter

This is a tasty way to entice your family to eat more veggies..especially this time of year when fresh vegetable are limited.  Try it...it's good!


Ingredients:
1 16oz. can French style green beans, drained
1 17oz. can LeSeur peas, drained
1 12oz. can shoe peg whole kernel corn, drained
1 C celery, chopped
½ green pepper, chopped
1 bunch green onions, chopped
¾ C white vinegar
½ C oil
1/4  C sugar to start, then add more to your taste
1 tsp. salt and pepper
1 TBS water

Instructions:
Boil vinegar, sugar, oil and seasonings until sugar melts. Cool. Add rest of ingredients and refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Aunt Gladys' 1950's Lime Jell-O Salad with Pineapple, Cream Cheese & Pecans

I was thinking about my Aunt Gladys today.  She was my Grandmother's sister.  My Grandmother raised me, and Aunt Gladys was like a grandmother to me.  In the 1940's and 1950's, on the last day of school, her car would be in the driveway when I got off the school bus.  She and I would head for her home, where I would spend the entire summer.  What a glorious time I had with her!!  We would shop at Rich's and Davison's in downtown Atlanta for hours on end...until my skinny little legs wouldn't take me another step.  The next day, I knew what was coming..."Patsy, I don't think I want any of these things"...so off we would go to Atlanta to return them.  She took me to the movies, the swimming pool, church...anywhere I wanted to go.  When I was a teenager, she would arrange for me to meet some nice young men from well-to-do families...she picked some really cute ones!  It was at her house that I began my culinary love affair with asparagus...yum!  She made me sweet iced tea mixed half and half with pineapple juice...60 years later, I still love it... and we call it an "Aunt Gladys"...she was decades ahead of "Arnold Palmer" ;)  Also, she never failed to make this congealed salad for me...I thought it was divine...and still enjoy eating it.  Such sweet memories of such a sweet and special aunt!  Thank you, Aunt Gladys...I hope I said that often enough while you were still here...but I do hope God doesn't have to go shopping with you.  I would love to go with you again, though. :)

Ingredients:

1 pkg. (3 oz.) cream cheese
1 pkg. (3 oz.) lime Jello
1 3/4 c. boiling water
1 can #2 crushed pineapple, drained
1/2 c. chopped pecans

Instructions:
Thoroughly blend cream cheese and Jello. Add boiling water. Stir until cheese mixture is completely melted. Chill until cool. Stir in pineapple and nuts. Chill again until set. Serve on beds of lettuce or make in a Jell-O mold, if desired.

Strawberry Gems

In the early eighties, we lived in Rock Hill, South Carolina.  A coupe of friends of mine had a lovely restaurant, and served delicious food.  They made these awesome little muffins, which went perfectly with their great salads.

Ingredients:
1 C self-rising flour
3/4 C sugar
1 egg, beaten
1/4 C milk
1/4 C vegetable oil
1/2 C sliced strawberries
Topping:
1/4 C sugar
1/4 tsp. cinnamon

Instructions:
Mix all ingredients, except strawberries until thoroughly incorporated.  Fold in berries.  Fill paper lined muffin tins 2/3 full.  Combine sugar and cinnamon; sprinkle over top of muffins.  Bake at 375* for 20-25 minutes until lightly browned.
Note: Blueberries may be substituted for strawberries.
I am sharing this with Tea Party Tuesday

Friday, January 6, 2012

Fake Ginger's Pasta Fagioli

This is the perfect for cold winter  nights served with crisp garlic bread, and a green salad.  It comes from Fake Ginger's blog.


Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled & chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 1 lb hot Italian sausage (casings removed if necessary)
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 -2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 3 – 4 cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock)
  • 1 can cannellini beans
  • 1 cup ditalini (or other small pasta)
  • Parmesan cheese, for serving
Instructions
Heat olive oil in a large heavy pot over medium high heat. Add the diced onion and cook until it just begins to soften, about 2 minutes. Add celery and carrots; cook, stirring frequently, for another 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook just until fragrant, about 30 seconds.Add the sausage to the pot, crumbling as it cooks. Cook until the sausage is no longer pink. Stir in Italian seasoning and red pepper. Stir in tomatoes and stock Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes.Stir in the beans and ditalini. (Add an extra cup of stock or water at this point if it’s boiled down too much.) Simmer for 6- 8 minutes or until pasta is tender.Serve piping hot with Parmesan cheese.  


Sharing with Foodie Friday 

Bacon Wrapped Green Beans

This tasty recipe comes from Just Cook Already.  A nice flavor and presentation for green beans.



Ingredients:
1 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed
5 strips of bacon cut in half
3 TBS melted butter
1/4 C brown sugar
1 clove garlic - pressed/finely chopped
1/8 tsp soy sauce

Instructions:
Boil green beans in large pot till tender. Meanwhile, fry the bacon in a skillet over med-low heat. You want the bacon to cook ‘soft’; do not ‘crisp’ the bacon. Place aside on paper towels to cool and reduce grease, then cut the strips into halves.  After beans have been drained, put a little butter in the pot to melt on the beans (this is optional and not included in the ingredients above). In a 13x9 pan lay one of the ‘half’ pieces of bacon and place several beans (about 6-7) then wrap the bacon around the bundle of beans and secure with a toothpick. Continue doing this till the beans are gone.  Melt the 3 tsp of butter in small sauce pan; add brown sugar, garlic salt and soy sauce and mix continuously over med-high heat. Once completely blended, brush over the bundles with a basting brush until mixture is all used.  Bake at 400 degrees 10-15 minutes.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Paula Deen's Gooey Butter Cake

Everyone raves about this cake from Paula Deen...rich, but good!
Ingredients:
Cake:
1 18 1/4-ounce package yellow cake mix
1 egg
8 tablespoons butter, melted
Filling:
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
8 tablespoons butter, melted
1 16-ounce box powdered sugar

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Combine the cake mix, egg, and butter and mix well with an electric mixer.  Pat the mixture into the bottom of a lightly greased 13 by 9-inch baking pan.  In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth.  Add the eggs, vanilla, and butter and beat together. Next, add the powdered sugar and mix well.  Spread over cake batter and bake for 40 to 50 minutes.  Make sure not to over bake as the center should be a little gooey.