Friday, December 16, 2011

My Top 11 Recipes of 2011

I thought it would be fun to list the recipes from this past year that were my all-time favorites.  So... if you see any you haven't made already, get on it! In no particular order...

If you have made some of these, which has been your favorite?

"Homemade" Chicken Noodle Soup

Photo Credit: Pioneer Woman

I've been craving some hearty chicken noodle soup and I was all gung-ho about making homemade noodles until I saw this recipe on Pioneer Woman's site.  I had never seen frozen noodles, but sure enough they were in my Safeway's freezer case.  I also am not a "debone a cut up fryer chicken" kind of gal so I just used chicken breasts and chicken stock/water.  So, it's really not all that homemade but it tasted great :)

1 whole Cut Up Fryer Chicken
2 whole Carrots, Diced
2 stalks Celery, Diced
1/2 whole Medium Onion, Diced (optional)
1 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Turmeric
1/4 teaspoon White Pepper (more To Taste)
1/4 teaspoon Ground Thyme
2 teaspoons Parsley Flakes
16 ounces, weight Frozen "homemade" Egg Noodles (I used the brand Reames)
3 Tablespoons All-purpose Flour

Preparation Instructions
Cover chicken in 4 quarts water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer for 30 minutes.
Remove chicken from pot with a slotted spoon. With two forks, remove as much meat from the bones as you can, slightly shredding meat in the process. Return bones to broth and simmer on low, covered, for 45 minutes.
Remove bones from broth with a slotted spoon, making sure to get any small bones that might have detached.
Add the carrots and celery (and onions, if using) to the pot, followed by the herbs and spices. Stir to combine and simmer for ten minutes to meld flavors.
Increase heat and add frozen egg noodles and chicken. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes.
Mix flour and a little water. Stir until smooth. Pour into soup, stir to combine, and simmer for another 5 minutes, or until broth thickens a bit. Test and adjust seasonings as needed.

Tex-Mex Beef Brunch Quiche

I love quiche, I love mexican food.  Can't go wrong with this one.

Pastry dough for 1-crust 9-inch pie
1 pound Kirkland Signature lean ground beef
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 cup sliced green onion
1 14 1/2-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
5 eggs
1/2 cup cold water
1 1/2 cups nacho or taco shredded cheese blend

Method of Tex Mex Beef Brunch Quiche Recipe
1. Preheat oven to 375°F.

2. Line a 9-inch pie pan with pastry dough; set aside.

3. Sauté ground beef until browned; drain off fat. Remove from the heat and stir in salt, garlic powder, cumin, chili powder, green onion and tomatoes.

4. Place eggs and water in a bowl and blend well.

5. Layer the ground beef mixture, egg mixture and cheese in the pie shell.

6. Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until set. Makes 6-8 servings.

Crispy Prosciutto and Scallion Frittata

The pan I used for this recipe was too big, which means it was too thin, which means I over cooked it and it was dry.  But I still wanted to post it because I think it could be really good.  Just don't use a 12" skillet.

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
6 scallions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
4 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto, torn into 1-inch pieces
8 large eggs
3 tablespoons whole milk
1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated Parmesan
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Heat oven to 350° F. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in an ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the scallions and cook, stirring, for 1 ½ minutes.
Add prosciutto and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly crisp, 3 to 4 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, Parmesan, and pepper. Pour into the skillet and stir.
Bake until browned around the edges and puffed (a knife should come out clean), 15 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, divide the arugula among plates. Drizzle with the remaining oil, sprinkle with salt, and top with goat cheese.
Cut the frittata into triangles and serve with the salad.

Zucchini, Potato and Ham Soup

I didn't have any potatoes so I used gnocchi in my recipe.  Mark liked the gnocchi twist, I think I would have preferred potatoes better.

1 tablespoon butter
2 onions, chopped
2 large yellow-fleshed potatoes, such as Yukon gold (about 1 pound total), peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
3 zucchini (about 1 pound total), sliced 1/4 inch thick
One 32-ounce container (4 cups) chicken broth
Two 1/4-inch-thick slices cooked ham (about 8 ounces), finely chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
Pinch nutmeg

DIRECTIONS:In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and lightly golden, about 8 minutes. Add the potatoes and zucchini and season with salt. Pour in the chicken broth and bring to a boil; cover, lower the heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes.

Using a blender, partially puree the soup, leaving some chunks. Stir in the ham, dill and nutmeg and serve with bread.

Sweet Smothered Pork Enchiladas

I guess I've been on an Angela kick lately.  Another one of her great recipes.  Make this one for sure!

2 1/2 pounds pork, any cut
salt and pepper
garlic powder
flour tortillas (8-10 large or 15-20 small)
2 10 0z. cans mild green chilie enchilada sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar (I know it seems like a lot but it's not)
1 can black beans, rinsed and well drained
chopped cilantro
1 cup monteray jack cheese, grated

Cut pork into large cubes and season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  Place cubes in slow cooker and add 1/3 cup water.  Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8.  Remove from cooker, letting juices drain off.  Place meat in large bowl and shred.  Mix in 1/2 cup chilie sauce, brown sugar and black beans.  Stir until well combined.  This is your enchilada filling.

Preheat oven to 350.  Lightly grease a 9x13 baking dish.

Pour 1/2 cup chilie sauce in bottom of dish.  Working with one tortilla at a time, spoon meat mixture and chopped cilantro (to taste) in center and roll up.  Place seam side down in dish.  Repeat with remaining tortillas.  Pour the rest of chilie sauce over enchiladas and top with grated cheese.

Bake 25-30 minutes, or until cheese is fully melted and bubbly.  Broil for 1-2 minutes to add a little texture if you want.

Monster Cookies

I was introduced to this recipe in college and it's a definite love of mine.  I wish it was possible to live off these. They almost feel like they could be healthy because of the oats and peanut butter, but they so aren't. :)  It's not a coincidence that I gained 3 pounds the week I made these.  Dear baby Harper, sorry about all the M&Ms you've been digesting this week.  Love, Mom

6 eggs
3 cups packed brown sugar
2 cups white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons corn syrup
1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup butter
3 cups peanut butter
9 cups rolled oats
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
2 cups candy-coated milk chocolate pieces (M&Ms)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
In a very large bowl, beat the eggs.
Add the remaining ingredients in order, mixing well. (Mixing with hands in the end is usually necessary)
Use an ice cream scoop (or a 1/4 cup) to put on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Do NOT over bake!

Mexican Bubble Pizza

The name alone drew me to this recipe.

1 lb ground beef
1 package taco seasoning mix
3/4 c. water
1 can (10.75 oz) condensed tomato soup (I used a can of enchilada sauce)
1 can Grands Refrigerated biscuits
2 c. shredded Mexican cheese
2 c. shredded lettuce
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 c. salsa
1 (2.25 oz) can ripe olives, drained
sour cream

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a large skillet brown the hamburger. Drain. Add taco seasoning, water and soup (or enchilada sauce) and mix well. Bring mixture to a boil and reduce heat and simmer for 3 minutes. Remove from heat.

2. Separate the dough into 8 biscuits. Cut the biscuits into 8 pieces each. Add the pieces to the beef mixture and gently stir. Spoon into a greased 9x13 in. glass dish.

4. Bake in oven for 20-22 min or until the sauce is bubbly and biscuits are golden brown. Sprinkle with cheese and bake another 10 minutes longer, or until cheese is bubbly.

Top with remaining ingredients!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Hawaiian Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Photo Credit: Food Network

Jaime made this recipe for one of our dinner swap meals and I was looking for an excuse to make it again!  I made a big batch for community group and it was a big hit.

1 packet teriyaki marinade (recommended: McCormick Grill Mates) (I found in the asian section)
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
3 1/2 pounds pork shoulder
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 cup chili sauce
1 (6-ounce) can pineapple juice
1 medium onion, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
8 hamburger rolls
2 tablespoon canola oil
1 tablespoon ginger, chopped
2 teaspoons garlic, chopped

In small bowl, combine teriyaki mix, paprika and pepper.
Coat the pork the with rub mixture, patting until all rub is used. Set aside.
In a bowl whisk together the chicken broth, brown sugar, soy sauce, chili sauce and pineapple juice. Set aside.
Put the chopped onions and carrots in a 5-quart slow cooker. Place the pork on top of the carrots and onions and pour half of the pineapple juice mixture over pork. Reserve remainder for Hawaiian sauce. Cover and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours. The meat should fall apart easily. Remove the roast from the slow cooker to a cutting board. Using 2 forks carefully pull the meat into shreds. Serve the pork on rolls drizzled with the Hawaiian sauce or on the side for dipping. Reserve the remaining pulled pork for the Round 2 Recipes, Pulled Pork Pot Stickers and Hawaiian Pizza.
In a medium pot heat the oil over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger and saute until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining pineapple juice mixture, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.


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