Posts Tagged ‘
Tuesday, June 11th, 2013
I know that a lot of recipes claim to be the best, so I don’t use those words lightly, but these seriously are the absolute best chocolate chip cookies I’ve ever made. Or for that matter, the best I’ve ever eaten. (Sorry Grandmother, yours were really good too!) And just so you know, I’ve tried dozens and have been on a search for the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe for the last 7 years. This one finally ended that quest.
The thing about these cookies is that they are slightly crispy around the outside and just so soft and moist in the center- the perfect combination! The key is the secret ingredient (the 7th listed) and not over-baking them. They also hold their shape well and stay soft longer than most cookies I’ve tried, although truth is, they usually get eaten so quickly it’s kind of hard to tell.
Anyway, don’t just take my word for it, try them yourself. But be prepared to eat a whole pan yourself. Can’t say I didn’t warn you!
Best Ever Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies
3/4 c. unsalted butter, softened
3/4 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. granulated sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 c. all purpose flour
2 tsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cream butter and sugars together until fluffy and light in color; blend in eggs and vanilla. Mix in flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop by tablespoons onto a greased baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes, until slightly golden brown around the edges. (The tops will not be brown, but that is okay.) Let cool for 5 minutes before removing from baking sheet.
Yields: about 3 dozen
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Tuesday, June 4th, 2013
We love meat but since it can quickly get expensive, one of the 6 ways that I save on meat is to try to eat at least one meatless dinner a week. Recipes like this Bean and Sour Cream Enchiladas make it easy to not mind doing that! They’re filling, delicious and simple to make too. Plus thanks to the beans you are still getting your protein.
The recipe that I adapted this from was incredibly spicy- so much so that you couldn’t really enjoy the flavors at all. I kept reworking it and finally came up with this version that even the kids love. But by all means, if you like spicy, up the cumin a bit and add in the cayenne pepper!
Bean and Sour Cream Enchiladas
1 cup chicken broth
1 tbsp cornstarch
6 oz can tomato paste
1 tbsp. chili powder
¼ tsp. cumin
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
Combine chicken broth and cornstarch in medium size saucepan; whisk until combined. Turn to medium heat; add tomato sauce and spices. Whisk together until combined. Continue cooking and whisking until sauce reaches desired consistency.
1 can refried beans (I use homemade
1 c. sour cream
¾ c. onion, chopped
1 ½ c. shredded cheddar cheese, divided
½ package taco seasoning
Mix beans, sour cream, onion, 1 cup cheese and taco seasoning until well combined. Spread 1/2 c. sauce on bottom of greased 9×13 baking dish. Divide enchilada mixture evenly between the 10 tortillas. Roll up and place seam side down in baking dish. Spread remaining sauce over enchiladas and top with remaining cheese. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
Linking up at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam, Mostly Homemade Mom, Buns in My Oven and Chef in Training.
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Tuesday, May 28th, 2013
I recently discovered this recipe at one of my new favorite blogs, Pennies & Pancakes. (Head over check it out- you’ll find lots of great stuff!) I’ve always had this love hate relationship with refried beans. I love them because they are so good and are an easy protein but I hated them because they had unhealthy things like partially hydrogenated lard in them and didn’t seem that good for you. I’ve thought of making my own refried beans for several years and when I saw Pennies & Pancakes‘ recipe I knew this was the one to finally get me to make my own refried beans. I mean it was too simple not to do it!
And trust me folks, not only are these beans incredibly easy to make, they are also just as good as their canned counterpart- and you can eat them happily knowing they contain only normal ingredients that you have in your cupboards!
Oh and they are quite a bit cheaper as well. I can get 2 lbs. pinto beans at Aldi for $1.99. I’m being generous and saying that the rest of the ingredients cost $0.51 for a total cost of $2.50. That means you can make these Crockpot Refried Beans for just $0.42/can. That’s almost half the price I pay at Aldi where they are $0.79/can and much less than you’ll pay at a regular grocery store.
Here’s Pennies & Pancaskes’ Crockpot Refried Beans recipe with my slight adaptations.
Crockpot Refried Beans
2 lbs. pinto beans
1 large onion, chopped
4 Tbsp. jarred minced garlic*
1 1/2 to 2 1/2 Tbsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
2 tsp cumin
6 cups hot water
* I typically use 3 tsp. granulated garlic
Rinse the beans and pick out any bad ones. Put beans in large pot and cover them well with hot water. Let set overnight. In the morning, drain the water off and thoroughly rinse the beans.
(You can skip the above step but it aids with the digestion of the beans and allows your body to get more from them. If you decide to skip it, use 10 cups of hot water instead of the 6 cups listed in the recipe and then cook them for 4 hours on high and 2 hours on low instead of the times listed below.)
Combine the beans and the rest of the ingredients in a large crockpot. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours and then on low for 1 hour. (If you cook for a couple of hours longer it doesn’t really matter.) Remove extra liquid, leaving enough liquid to reach desired consistency when the beans are mashed. (I don’t drain any liquid when I do the 6 cups water method. But when I the 10 cups I typically drain some off. It’s really a trial and error.)
Mash beans with a potato masher or blend in your blender.
Beans will store in your fridge for 2 weeks or you can freeze them too.
Yield: 12 cups or the equivalent of 6 cans
Linking up at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam, Chef in Training, Mostly Homemade Mom, Buns in My Oven, and Blessed with Grace.
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Tuesday, May 21st, 2013
We love this twist on traditional macaroni and cheese. The chicken bouillon and Parmesan cheese add an interesting pop of flavor and even if you’re like me and aren’t a mac ‘n cheese fan, I think you’ll enjoy it.
Creamy Ham N Macaroni
2 c. uncooked macaroni (or other pasta)
3 tbsp. butter
¼ c. flour
2 c. milk
4 tsp. chicken bouillon granules
¼ tsp. pepper
2 c. shredded cheddar cheese, divided
1 ½ c. cubed fully cooked ham
¼ c. grated Parmesan cheese
Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain and set aside. In a large saucepan, melt butter over low heat; whisk in flour until smooth. Whisk in the milk, bouillon and pepper. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat. Stir in 1 cup cheddar cheese, ham, Parmesan cheese and macaroni. Transfer to a greased 2 qt. baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake uncovered, at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until bubbly. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.
* If you don’t care for ham, try it without- maybe just up the macaroni by 1/4 cup. I think it would still be really good!
Yield: 6 servings
For other recipe ideas, check out Balancing Beauty and Bedlam’s Tasty Tuesday, Mostly Homemade Mom’s Show and Share Wednesday, and Blessed with Grace’s Tempt My Tummy Tuesday.
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Tuesday, May 14th, 2013
This casserole, with all the tastes of a cheeseburger rolled into one dish, is an old favorite of ours. I started making it soon after we were married 6 1/2 years ago but had sort of forgotten about it until last week when I happened across the recipe and decided to make it for dinner. The whole family confirmed again that yes, this is a dish that I need to keep making, and making often.
Reminiscent of a breakfast casserole because of the egg/milk mixture, the cheeseburger part smacks of a hearty meal. And if you keep cooked ground beef in the freezer, this dish is a cinch to throw together.
8 slices of bread, toasted and buttered (I use my homemade whole wheat)
1 to 1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
1/2 c. onion
1/4 c. celery (optional)
1/2 c. ketchup
4 tsp. mustard
3/4 tsp. salt
1 c. cheese
1 c. milk
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1/8 tsp. pepper
Fry ground beef, onion and celery. Add ketchup, mustard and salt. Layer 4 slices of toast, half of beef mixture and half cup of cheese in greased baking dish (an 8×8 works well). Repeat toast and beef layers. Mix milk, egg, mustard and pepper and pour over everything. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top and let sit for 5 minutes to melt cheese.
For other recipe ideas, check out Balancing Beauty and Bedlam’s Tasty Tuesday, 33 Shades of Green’s Tasty Tuesday, Mostly Homemade Mom’s Show and Share Wednesday and Blessed with Grace’s Tempt My Tummy Tuesday.
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