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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Healthy Challenge: Simple Tuna Salad Sandwich

Get the food tracker here: https://www.supertracker.usda.gov/

Ingredients:


  • 2 slices of white bread
  • 1/4 cup tuna (canned)
  • 1/4 cup celery chopped
  • 1 T. Mayonnaise
  • 1 slice cheese (I used american)
  • cracked pepper


Directions: (Not that you need them but....)
Mix tuna, celery, and mayonnaise. Add cracked pepper as desired.
Spread over bread with a slice of cheese!

         





Get the food tracker here: https://www.supertracker.usda.gov/











Healthy Challenge: Oatmeal

Yield: 1 serving

I have never been a breakfast eater, and I need more whole grains in my diet with fewer empty calories. This  oatmeal is a great little breakfast with fruits if you choose!



***Use water if you do not need to fill dairy requirements.






Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
  • 1 cup milk (low or no fat)
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar



Directions:
Bring the milk and rolled oats to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium and cover.
Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Pour into serving dish and sprinkle the brown sugar over the top.

















Monday, February 25, 2013

Corned Beef Hash

Yield: serves 4-6

This corned beef hash is so good with eggs and toast. Serve it with just about anything you like, but it some how belongs with eggs:)












Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. corned beef shredded or cut into smaller pieces.
  • 3 medium potatoes peeled and diced small.
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons cracked black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon minced onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic




Directions:

  1. In a non-stick fry pan, add all ingrediets on the olive oil.
  2. You may need more olive oil as it cooks, so add a little at a time.
  3. Cook on medium high heat, turning as it browns on all sides.
  4. Corned beef is already salty, so there is no need to add any salts.
  5. Serve with eggs and toast:)
















Sunday, February 24, 2013

Red Velvet Cake w/ Cream Cheese Frosting

Yield: 2 – 9” rounds

Red Velvet Cake is a southern favorite here in Alabama. A hint of chocolate in the deep red cake gives it it's well known appeal paired with a sweet and creamy cream cheese frosting. Around here, it is one of the most popular requests!










Ingredients:

Cake Ingredients:
  • 2 ½ c. flour
  • 1 ½ c. sugar
  • 1 t. baking soda
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1 t. cocoa
  • 1 ½ c. veg oil
  • 1 c. sour milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 oz. red color
  • 1 t. vinegar
  • 1 t. vanilla
Frosting Ingredients:
  • 1 c. butter at room temperature
  • 5 c. Powdered sugar
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 1 lb. cream cheese at room temperature




Directions for the cake:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Mix sugar, red color, egg, vanilla, vinegar, and oil in a medium sized mixing bowl until smooth.
  3. In a seperate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, salt, and cocoa. Mix well.
  4. Begin adding the sour milk and flour mixture to the wet mixure alternately, stirring together before next addition.
  5. Mix until cake batter is smooth and lump free.
  6. Pour into 2 greased and floured 8 or 9 inch pans.
  7. Bake 30-35 minutes or until knife inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
  8. Cool completely.


Once cakes are cool, level the top of each, cutting away the domed area on top.
Reserve cake trimmings and crumble into cake crumbs.

To make the frosting:
  1. Mix cream cheese, butter and vanilla until smooth.
  2. Add powdered sugar, mixing in completely a little at a time until smooth.
Assemble and frost the cake:
  1. Spread a layer of frosting on the top of the bottom cake layer.
  2. Place second cake evenly on the first layer.
  3. Frost the cake completely.
  4. Take the cake crumbs from the trimming and press it into the frosting all the way around the edges of the cake.
***Because of the cream cheese. this cake must be refridgerated. It is okay at room temperature long enough for a party or event but not too long!




Batter Fried Zucchini

Yield: 4-6 small zucchinies sliced

This batter fried zucchini recipe is perfectly seasoned using old bay seasoning, but you can use any seasoning you desire. They come out crisp and delicious every time. Use this batter with any veggies the same way!











Ingredients:

  • 4- 6 Zucchini's sliced into 1/2" slices or french fried
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 3/4 cup cornstarch
  • 3/4 - 1 cup water
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon old bay seasoning or salt and pepper to taste
  • oil for frying



Directions:


  1. In a medium mixing bowl, add flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and seasoning. Mix well.
  2. Beat egg with water and add to dry ingredients, mixing thoroughly with a whisk.
  3. Dip zucchini slices into batter and place in hot grease to fry.
  4. Fry each side of zucchini until brown, turning to brown each side.
  5. Be sure you do not crowd pan while frying and add each slice one by one to avoid them clumping together.
  6. Remove from grease and place on paper towels to absorb grease.
  7. Salt if desired and serve with your favorite blue cheese or veggie dip!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Pina Colada Cake

Yield: 1 - 8"  2 layer round cake

Pineapple Kisses & Coconut Dreams!!!

This Pina Colada Cake is flooded with coconut cream and pineapple juice, and spread with coconut and crushed pineapple as well as a sweet and tangy coconut frosting. This cake must be stored in the refrigerator. 

I was inspired to do this cake by a Face Book fan that shared a coconut cake recipe on my page! Thank you Ginny Grantham.







Ingredients:
  • 1 box white cake mix baked according to package directions
  • 1 can cream de coco
  • Icing:
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 cups shredded coconut
  • 10 oz. crushed pineapple drained well. Try to push the liquid from it using a colander. Reserve juice.
  • 1 cup shredded coconut to top cake
  • 10 oz. crushed pineapple for middle layer
 


Directions:
  1. Make icing first. Refigerate 2 - 3 hours
  2. Mix sour cream, sugar, 10 oz. pineapple, and shredded coconut. Refrigerate 3 hours before frosting cake. Pour off any liquid before stirring after refrigerated. 
  3. Prepare cake mix according to package directions and bake.
  4. Cool cake completely.
  5. Mix coconut cream and ½ - ¾ cup pineapple juice.
  6. Punch holes in cake with a fork and pour coconut milk over each half cake.
  7. After poring coconut, pineapple mixture into cakes, spread the 10 oz. pineapple over the bottom half and place the top half over it.
  8. Frost the cake with coconut, pineapple icing.
  9. Sprinkle remaining cup coconut over cake.
  10. Store in refrigerator.
***Its a bit messy, add more coconut to thicken frosting a bit. I would add an entire cup more to it, and it is very important to allow it to chill for 3-4 hours before frosting your cake. It is definitely tasty just the way it is though.
***I intend on dropping the amount of sugar the next time around. If you do and it still holds, please let me know!
***I had a lot more frosting than I needed. Maybe double the amount, so I am going to see if I can make some rice pudding with it :) 




This recipe also attended:



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Friday, February 22, 2013

Oat and Almond Granola Bars

Yield: 1 - 9"x9" pan

This recipe is healthy and kids love it as much as adults. It has nuts, dried fruits, oats, and honey which are all beneficial and healthy additions to any snack. These are soft and crunchy and can be made in a larger pan for granola mix instead of bars.










Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 cup milk (omit the milk if you want them dryer and crunchy!)
  • 1 cup nuts (I used whole almonds)
  • 1/2 cup chocolate or peanut butter chips (I use chocolate)
  • 1/2 cup raisins or other dried fruit
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract



This is what it will look like before baking.
Directions:


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In medium bowl, combine brown sugar, butter, vanilla and egg. Mix well.
  3. Stir in milk and the remainder of ingredients.
  4. Pour mixture into a greased 9"x9" baking pan and press/smooth level.
  5. Bake 30 - 40 minutes or until it sets/dries to your tastes.

Cool completely before cutting.
Cut into 9 squares! Whole nuts make it a bit difficult but it is well worth it :)


If you want to slow the browning down, simply place a piece of aluminum foil loosely on top of the bars after its as brown as you like.








Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Potato and Bacon Soup

Yield: Family Pot

This potato soup is simple, delicious and filling. I add bacon for the meat eaters, and adding a bit of cheese to the bowl is always exciting! It is wonderful cooked from the beginning with any smoked pork, my favorite is ham or bacon.










Ingredients:

  • 10 large potatoes peeled and diced into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 1+ gallon water - or enough to keep potatoes submerged while cooking and allow some broth
  • 2 cups milk or cream
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2-3 tablespoons chives
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with equal amount water
  • 4 slices of cooked bacon per person
  • Salt and pepper to taste



Directions:

  1. In a large kettle, cover diced potatoes, garlic, and onions with plenty of water for boiling.
  2. Boil potatoes until they are just beginning to break apart when you stir them. This allows some potatoes to mash up into the starchy broth.
  3. Reduce heat to medium.
  4. Add milk and cream (I use half of each.)
  5. Begin adding cornstarch, water mixture slowly, stirring constantly while slowly adding to get the desired thickness. If you add too much, simply add a bit more milk to make the difference. If you would like it even thicker, simply mix more equal parts cornstarch and water to add.
  6. Add chives. and salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Allow soup to simmer while you fry your bacon stirring occasionally, but NEVER ALLOW IT TO BOIL. 
  8. When the bacon is crisp, you can either tear it up into pieces to add it directly to the soup, or just set it on top of each bowl of soup. I have a vegetarian to feed, so I add it to the soup after it is served.



FEATURED SUNDAY LUNCHEON RECIPE

Featured Sunday Luncheon Recipe 
Get your recipe featured here! Post a recipe, and the most popular will be featured!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Pork and Collard Greens

Yield: approx. 5-8 dinner bowls (large pot!)

This recipe for collard greens uses pork neck bones. Most of the time, I use pork hocks or ox tails for my greens, but the neck bones were just perfect too!












Ingredients:
  • 10 ounces smoked pork neck bones
  • 2 lb. fresh collard greens or 1 lb. frozen
  • 1 cups black beans soaked and rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Enough water to keep ingredients covered during cooking (Nice broth)



Directions:
Using a large kettle on the stove top, or a crock pot, add all ingredients and allow to cook on medium heat for a few hours or better yet, all day. I like to use the crock pot so I don't have to watch it and it cooks in its own juices all day.
The meat will fall from the bones in this savory green stew!
This recipe is even better the second time around as left overs!




Raspberry and lemon layer cake


Yield: 1 double layer 8" round cake

This raspberry lemon cake is perfect for a party or family desert. The lemon curd has a pucker that the raspberries balance perfectly. You may use jam or preserves, but I prefer fresh raspberries.











Ingredients:


  • 2 - 8" round white cakes baked (white cake recipe)
  • 1 cup lemon curd (lemon curd recipe)
  • 1 pint fresh or frozen raspberries
  • 1/2 cup. sugar
  • 2 cups whipping cream or heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Directions:


  1. Using a long serrated blade, layer each of the two baked cakes so once the entire cake is assembled, you actually have four thin layers. Set aside.
  2. In a medium sauce pan, on medium heat, combine raspberries, lemon juice, and sugar. Heat slowly, stirring constantly until a thick syrup forms.
  3. Remove from heat and refrigerate until cold.
  4. Beginning with the bottom layer, first spread raspberry filling in a thin layer. 
  5. Over the layer of raspberry filling, drizzle/spread lemon curd in a thin layer. I add a lot and it always drips out of the cut pieces like the photo above displays!
  6. Place the second cake layer over the filled layer evenly and repeat the raspberry and lemon spreads. 
  7. Once you have topped the cake with the last cake layer, refrigerate.
  8. in a smaller mixing bowl, beat confectioners sugar with heavy cream until stiff peaks form.
  9. Spread whipped cream over entire cake. 

This cake needs refrigerating because of the cream, but I allow it to warm to room temperature before serving, as cold cake is too dense for my tastes. 

Put some fresh berries on top for a nice display!









Monday, February 18, 2013

Soft Pretzels


Yield: 1 dozen

This soft pretzel recipe is popular in our house. I make them in triple batches to freeze. To heat them after freezing, just throw them in the microwave for 1 1/2 minutes. 













Ingredients:
  • 1 ½ tablespoons yeast 
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar 
  • 1 1/4 cups warm water 
  • 5 cups AP flour 
  • 1/2 cup white sugar 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt 
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 
  • 1/2 cup baking soda 
  • 4 cups hot water 
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt, for topping


Directions

  1. In a small bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar in warm water. Let stand until foamy (10 minutes.) 
  2. In a large bowl, mix together flour, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt. 
  3. Make a well in the center 
  4. add the oil and yeast mixture. Mix and form into a dough ball. 
  5. If the mixture is dry, add one or two tablespoons of water. 
  6. Knead the dough 10 minutes. 
  7. Lightly grease a large bowl, and rise dough covered and in a warm place until doubled in size. 
  8. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. 
  9. In a large bowl, dissolve baking soda in hot water. 
  10. After dough has had a chance to rise, turn out onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 12 equal pieces. 
  11. Roll each piece into a rope and twist into a pretzel shape. or cut each rope into 5-6 nuggets as the photo above!
  12. Once all of the dough is all shaped, submerge each pretzel into the baking soda water, and place on a greased baking sheet. 
  13. Sprinkle with kosher salt. 
  14. Bake in preheated oven for 8 minutes, or until deep brown in color.
  15. Cool and store in air tight container or freeze.




Saturday, February 16, 2013

Lemon Curd


Yield: About 2 cups of curd

This lemon curd recipe may be used for cakes, pies, or any other desert. Easy swaps of water and lemon juice are successful for changing the strength of lemon flavor. This recipe is very lemony as is!










Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup Corn Starch
  • 1-1/4 cups cold water
  • 3 egg yolks, slightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons Grated lemon peel
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon butter


Directions:

  1. Combine 1 cup sugar and corn starch in medium saucepan. 
  2. Gradually stir in water and lemon juice until smooth. 
  3. Stir in egg yolks and lemon peel. 
  4. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thickened. Be patient, it will take a bit!
  5. Remove from heat and stir in butter. The curd will thicken even more as it cools so keep that in mind when you are cooking to desired thickness.
  6. Place plastic wrap directly on top of curd to avoid the skin that covers it with air exposure.
  7. Refrigerate until completely cold.
  8. Beat with mixer to loosen it up when you are ready to use!


When Life Gives You Lemons, Throw 'em Back!

Perfect White Cake

Yield: 2 - 8"x2" round cake pans.

This white cake recipe is very moist with a perfect crumb. It bakes up fluffy but almost level on top, which is helpful when you are putting layers together and want a flat surface.





Cake Decorating Business Secrets




Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 4 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 egg whites
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 sticks soft butter
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 teaspoons clear vanilla extract


Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and 1 cup of sugar until smooth and fluffy. Beat in Vanilla.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. 
  4. Begin adding milk and flour mixture alternately, mixing completely before the next addition. Be sure this is mixed smooth.
  5. In a third bowl, combine egg whites and the remainder of the sugar (1/4 cup).
  6. Beat on high until soft peaks form.
  7. Pour the egg white mixture into the batter and gently fold batter over into egg from every angle until it is combined. Do not over work, its okay to see some marbling in your batter.
  8. Pour half of batter into each of two 8 inch greased cake pans.
  9. Bake for 30 - 35 minutes or until tooth pick inserted into center comes out clean.
  10. Cool and remove cakes from pan.


Cake Decorating Business Secrets


French Croissants


These croissants make great breakfast sandwiches or stand alone well. They have layers of flaky, buttery crust that will melt in your mouth. They take time to make, but you will always be glad you did!



I have had this croissant recipe for years just scribbled on a piece of paper. Im not sure where the recipe came from, but this recipe is well worth the time put into it. I like larger croissants, so this recipe gives me between 6-8 croissants.


Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 t. yeast
  • 3 T. hot water
  • 1 t. sugar
  • 1 ¾ c. flour
  • 2 t. sugar
  • 1 ½ t. salt
  • 2/3 c. warm milk
  • 2 T. vegetable oil
  • 2/3 c. cold butter
  • 1 T water


Cooking Directions
  1. Dissolve yeast, sugar and hot water. Add sugar, salt and warm milk to flour along w/ yeast mixture.
  2. Knead 10 min. Rise in bowl till tripled. Pat down gently.
  3. Rise again till doubled. Deflate gently and chill 20 minutes.
  4. Roll out into rectangle. Slice half of butter on surface, sprinkle w/ extra flour. Fold.
  5. Roll out and repeat w/ butter. Refrigerate 2 hrs.
  6. Repeat and chill 2 more hrs.
  7. Separate in half. Roll circles. Cut wedges and roll.
  8. Rise till puffy
  9. brush croissants whole egg and water wash
  10. Bake 475 degree F for 12-15 min.
Keikos Cake And Pastry Friends

Friday, February 15, 2013

Red Rice and Beans

Yield: Serves a large family

This rice and beans recipe came from my Dad (step) who was born and raised in Puerto Rico. The red color comes from annatto oil and or Goya Sazone with the color and tomato sauce. This recipe contains dark red kidney beans but just about any kind of bean may be used.



When I make Red Rice and Beans, I usually serve it with Chicken or pork. In this photo, you can see a Cranberry Apple Glazed Broiled Pork Chop which I served my family for Valentines Day. Get the glaze recipe at the link below. You will be delighted to use it over and over!
Cranberry Apple Glaze


Red Rice and Beans

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups uncooked white rice
  • 3 1/2 cups water
  • 1 - 15.5 oz. can dark red kidney beans
  • 6 oz. salsa or plain tomato sauce (I use salsa always)
  • 3 tablespoons Annatto oil
  • 2 tablespoons Cilantro
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 packet Goya Sazone
  • Goya Adobo to taste
  • Black pepper to taste



Directions:
In a medium kettle on medium high heat, add annatto oil and all of your seasonings.
Add rice and allow it to heat in the seasoned oil until it is completely and evenly coated stirring constantly.
Add the sauce/salsa and bean, continue stirring.
Add water, stir and allow the mix to boil at least 5 minutes stirring occasionally to prevent the bottom from burning. I like to boil it until most of the liquid is absorbed.
Reduce heat to simmer, and cover.
Simmer for approximately 20 minutes, stirring minimally.

***This recipe is very versatile. You may add onions, Spanish olives, which I do frequently along with diced meats. Some times I even use corn instead of beans. Its budget friendly and easy to create your own version.
***If you prefer dryer rice, with hold 1/2 cup of water and boil until all fluid is absorbed before you cover it. I like mine a bit more moist ...almost sticky!





Cranberry Apple Glaze for pork or poultry

Yield: 2+ cups glaze

This cranberry apple glaze is perfect for grilling, roasting, or broiling your pork and chicken cuts. With a touch of cayenne  the sweet cranberry glaze offers a balanced blend of sweet and spicy you will love.



I made this dinner for my family for Valentines Day. I cut heart shapes from sliced jellied cranberry sauce to decorate the plates with love! These pork chops are broiled with the cranberry apple glaze below. Also pictured is Red Rice and Beans with steamed broccoli.

Barbecue Champ - The Best Competition Barbecue Recipes

Cranberry Apple Glaze
Ingredients:
  • 1 - 14 oz. can of jellied cranberry sauce
  • 1 cup apple juice
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar packed
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more if you like heat)
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper (I use cracked pepper)




Directions:

In a medium sauce pan, combine all ingredients and whisk until smooth. 
Heat on medium heat until mixture begins to bubble.
Stir constantly so it does not burn and cook for about 5-10 minutes.
The glaze will thicken a bit. If you think it is too thick for your purpose, simple add more apple juice a little at a time until it reaches the consistency you desire.

Brush glaze on meats as they cook. I repeat the brushing 3-5 times through out the cooking process to get a nice thick glaze.



Strawberry Shortcake (shortcake biscuits)

Yields: 5-8 deserts
This strawberry short cake recipe uses shortcake biscuits, with a subtle hint of lemon and apple juice in the strawberries to extend the sweet syrup. Top it off with a lightly sweetened whipped cream. The biscuits soak up the juice and the flavors blend perfectly. Just the right amount of sweet!





Ingredients:
  • 1 batch shortcake biscuits (below)
  • 4-5 c. fresh sliced strawberries
  • 1 c. apple juice (if you like more juice on your biscuit)
  • 1.2 c. sugar
  • 1 T. lemon juice
  • Whipped cream


Directions for strawberries:
Place sliced strawberries in a bowl, add sugar, apple juice  and lemon juice. Stir and allow strawberries to sit for a few hours or over night, in the fridge.





Shortcake biscuits (6-12 depending on size and desired thickness.)
Ingredients:
  • 2 c. flour
  • 1 T.  Baking powder
  • 2 T. lemon juice
  • 1/4 t. salt
  • 4 T. sugar
  • 4 T. Butter
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 egg yolk

Directions for shortcake biscuits:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Mix dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
Cut butter into pieces and distribute into the dry mix.
Combine butter into flour mixture creating somewhat of a crumb texture.
Beat milk, yolk and lemon juice together in separate bowl.
Pour milk mixture into flour mixture and combine just enough to form a dough ball.
On a floured surface, fold dough in half 2 – 3 times but do not work it too much.
Using your hands or a rolling pin, roll to ½ inch thickness and cut 12 biscuits with a biscuits cutter.
Place side by side on a lightly greased sheet pan.
Brush with additional melted butter and sprinkle with a bit of sugar if you like.
Bake for 10 – 12 min. or until golden brown.





To assemble your strawberry short cake, split biscuits, spoon strawberries over bottom portion of biscuit then a dollop of whipped cream. Place the top part of the biscuit over it and spoon more strawberries and whipped cream. Top it off with a whole strawberry! 





Thursday, February 14, 2013

Spinach, Artichoke, and Asparagus Salad


This salad features marinated artichoke hearts, asparagus, sweet purple onions and fresh baby spinach, drizzled with a honey mustard dressing. I served this Spinach, Artichoke, and Asparagus Salad with Cheesy Stuffed Shells!




Ingredients:

  • 4 c. baby spinach leaves
  • Marinated Artichoke hearts halved (1 14 oz. can should be enough)
  • 1 c. steamed asparagus tips
  • 1/2 Sweet Italian purple onion sliced
  • 1 large tomato cut into wedges or strips
  • 1 c. Fresh shredded Parmesan cheese


Honey mustard dressing:
Ingredients:

  • 1/2 c. Olive oil
  • 2 T. Apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T. Honey mustard
  • 1 - 2 T. honey
  • 1 T. Red wine
  • 1 t. basil
  • 1 t. minced garlic




Directions:
Combine salad ingredients in a large salad serving bowl.
Mix Honey mustard dressing ingredients well. Do this at least an hour before serving so the flavors have time to blend.
Drizzle dressing over salad lightly either right in serving bowl or per serving. I do it per serving so each person chooses the right amount for their own tastes.

Italian Cookbook - Classic Old World Italian Recipes




Cheesy Stuffed Shells

Italian Cookbook - Classic Old World Italian Recipes

These cheesy stuffed shells are filled with ricotta, Parmesan, and mozzarella cheeses, and seasoned perfectly. The homemade sauce has a hearty amount of ground beef, onions, peppers and small bits of tomato. This recipe has been around many years in my home, and my Italian friends even preferred this recipe over their own :)
I served this with a Spinach, Artichoke Salad pictured here.
I usually also make some cheesy garlic bread, but I didn't have the time for it this time around. I really top mine off with a bunch of cheese because we just love cheese like that :)



Filling:
  • 1 ½ c. Ricotta cheese
  • 1 c. cottage cheese
  • 1 c. Mozzarella cheese
  • 1 c. Grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1 t. Basil
  • 1 t. Oregano
  • 1 t. Parsley

Directions for filling:
Mix all ingredients well in a large bowl.



Sauce:
  • 1-14.5 oz. can stewed tomatoes
  • 2- 6 oz. can tomato paste
  • 18 oz. water (I use tomato paste can – 3)
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • ¼ c. sugar
  • 1 small onion chopped (1/2 cup)
  • 1 small bell pepper chopped (1/2 cup)
  • 1 t. minced garlic
  • 2 T. Italian seasoning
  • 1 T. Cracked black pepper
  • Salt to taste

Directions for sauce:

In a fry pan, cook ground beef, onion, and pepper until beef is browned.
Drain grease.
In sauce pan, combine all other sauce ingredients, and pour ground beef into sauce.
Simmer 15- 20 minutes.



For the pasta:
  • 1 lb. box jumbo shells pasta

Boil shells until half cooked.
Drain shells and cool under cold water.
Stuff each shell with cheese mixture, and close edges. Try not to over fill, as it will leak out of the shell if you don’t close it edges in.
Place all of the filled shells side by side in a 8”x13” baking pan or casserole dish.
Evenly pour meat sauce over the shells.
Top shells and sauce with mozzarella and grated Parmesan.
Bake at 350 for 20 – 30 minutes or until cheese turns a light golden brown around the edges.
Let set for 15 minutes, and serve.

Italian Cookbook - Classic Old World Italian Recipes

  

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