Monday, December 5, 2016

Alisha's Caramels

Alisha Johnson shared this amazing caramel recipe with me. She found it at:
We all know we attribute recipes to those who share them with us!!
HOMEMADE CARAMEL, my fail proof recipe

Homemade Caramel (or caramel dip)
Yield: about 60 caramels
Prep and cook time: 1 hour (not including time to cut and wrap caramels, save extra time for that)
Ingredients:
1 cup butter, unsalted...room temp before beginning
1 cup light corn syrup (11.5 oz)
1 14-oz. can sweetened condensed milk (or substitute two cups half and half or light cream, I almost always use sweetened condensed milk b/c makes for shorter cooking time)
2 1/4 cup brown sugar (14.5 oz.), white sugar is also okay, but I prefer brown
1 tsp. vanilla
(Note: if you try any substitute ingredients, I’d love to hear how it goes! I’d love to accommodate readers with any dietary restrictions!)
Equipment:
candy thermometer
heavy, 3-qt. sauce pan, or 6-qt. if doubling the recipe, which I always do (having a heavy pan is important, if your pan is too thin it can heat the caramel unevenly and make it separate)
parchment paper (how I love parchment paper, i’ve never found anything that sticks to this stuff)
8×8 or 9×9 pan (or large jelly-roll cookie sheet if doubling recipe)
wax paper for wrapping caramels
Method:
  1. Every time before using a candy thermometer, clip a candy thermometer onto a pan full of cold water and bring it to a boil (make sure the thermometer is not touching the bottom of the pan). I cheat on a lot of things, but I never cheat on this. Boiling water should read 212°. Once the water is boiling, make note of any difference in your reading, and adjust your reading accordingly when you make the candy (for example, if thermometer reads 210° in boiling water instead of 212°, then take caramel off at 242° instead of 244°). High-altitude note: If you live above 7k feet, see the high-alt info below. BE SURE TO DRY THE PAN TOTALLY BEFORE BEGINNING TO CANDY.
  2. Line pan with parchment paper, even up the sides. Prepare any apples, pretzels, or other things you’ll be dipping. Chop any nuts or prepare any candy you’ll be sprinkling on top.
  3. Cut butter into smaller, even sized cubes for even melting. Melt over low in sauce pan.
  4. Carefully add sugar by pouring it into the center of the pan. If any sugar crystals stick to side of pan, push them down with a damp pastry brush so they do not crystallize the entire batch and make you want to cry. Stir slowly until well combined with melted butter.
  5. Add and mix in corn syrup and sweetened condensed milk (or cream).
  6. Cook and stir on medium for one minute, then to med.-high until boiling. You want to change temperatures slowly so you don’t shock the candy. Once boiling, clip on your candy thermometer (again, don’t let it touch the bottom of the pan). By the time your caramel is boiling, if you have been stirring well, you should have the butter fully blended into the caramel mixture, not separated.
  7. Reduce heat to about medium, adjusting so that you keep a moderate, steady boil. Stir frequently. I’m serious about the stirring. If you let your caramel go too long without stirring, you’ll end up with a separated, greasy batch of caramel. No good.
  8. Temperature does not raise at a steady rate, so watch thermometer closely. If you have any doubts about the accuracy of your thermometer, periodically do a test by dropping a little in cold water. When your thermometer reaches thread stage (230–233°), take out any caramel that you would like to use as dip. When thermometer reaches late soft ball stage (234–240°), dip in a few apples for caramel apples (UPDATE: Click here for  a great pro tip for perfect caramel apples.)
  9. When thermometer reaches 244°, remove caramel from heat (this is low firm ball stage; reaching this stage from boiling takes me about 30 minutes with sweetened condensed milk and longer with cream, though I have had a reader reach it in less time, so watch closely).
  10. Stir in vanilla. If dipping, start immediately. If making caramels, pour the caramel into the prepared pan. Either way, take care not to burn yourself, this stuff is so so hot.
  11. Allow to cool for several hours and use a butter knife or kitchen shears to cut pieces (UPDATE: a clever reader suggested a pizza cutter, another preferred preferred her trusty Santou knife, lightly buttered, thanks Susan!). Wrap in parchment paper. Or to save on cutting time, just leave the whole batch out on the counter with a knife next to it and watch it gradually disappear.
And, for handy reference, here is the candy temperature list:
230–233° Thread
234–240° Soft ball
244–248° Firm ball
250–266° Hard ball


Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Crispy Oven Roasted Potatoes

One of our all time fav missionaries is going home and we shall really miss him.  This morning we had 6 elders (2 from Elyria and one of them is also returning home) for breakfast.  Our Elder Reece Ravsten requested biscuits and gravy so I added these potatoes which were excellent and eggs and bacon (as per requested by another elder).  But these potatoes I will make again
Here they are simmering in broth...can use chip or beef.

6 Medium Potatoes, peeled
  • 1 1/2 cups of Beef or Chicken Broth
  • 2 Tablespoons of butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Cut the potatoes in 1 inch cubes and place in a bowl with the olive oil, pepper, garlic powder & onion powder then toss until the potatoes are well coated. 
  3. In a medium pot, pour the broth & butter together, bring to a simmer. 
  4. Add the coated potatoes in and bring to a boil for 5-8 minutes, stirring gently until slightly tender.
  5. Transfer the potatoes to a baking dish with the broth/butter mixture, making sure the potatoes are not overlapping each other, spread them out into one layer.
  6. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese & gently mix to ensure they are all coated. 
  7. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until browned and crisp. 
  8. Flip once with a spatula during cooking to ensure even crisping.
  9. Remove the potatoes from the oven, season to taste & serve hot.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Cabbage, Noodles, Sausage, Peas




  • 12 oz kielbasa or sausage, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • ¼ cup salted butter
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • ½ head cabbage, chopped (approx. 6-7 cups)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ⅔ cup frozen peas
  • 8 oz uncooked egg noodlessalt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
Instructions
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  1. Cook noodles according to package directions, drain and set aside.
  2. In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil. Cook sausage until lightly browned.
  3. Add remaining olive oil, butter and onion. Cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add cabbage and garlic. Cook until tender (10-15 minutes). Stir in peas, noodles and salt & pepper. Cook 2-3 minutes or until heated through.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Ken Barlow's 'casserole' dinner

1 can apple pie filling
4 pork chops
1 box Stovetop Stuffing mix

Breading FEB...flour, Egg, Breading (I used Panko)

Spread the apple pie filling into a casserole dish (with a cover or use foil)

Take the chops and cover with flour, dip in egg and then in the breading.  Place the pork chops in a heated skillet with olive oil and just brown on each side.  Lay the pork chops over the apple pie filling.

Mix the Stovetop Stuffing mixture as box directs but do not all to sit.  Immediately place over the chops.

Cover with lid or foil

Bake at 350 for 1 hours.

This was shared with me from Ken.  Tonight Ken said next he's going to make this dish with Peach Pie, a thick slick of ham with bone, and still covered with stuffing.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Carrot Cake

Cream together 4 eggs,
                          2 cups sugar
                          1 cup oil

Sift and add:  2 cups flour
                      1 t. salt
                      1 t. baking powder
                      2 t. cinnamon
                      1 cups chopped walnuts or pecans
                      2 cups grated carrots.

Grease and flour 9x13" pan,  Bake at 325 for 35-40 minutes

Creamed Cheese Frosting

1 - 8 oz Philly Cream Cheese
1/2-3/4 stick margarine
2 t. vanilla
4 cups powdered sugar

whip and spread on cake

Here is a note that was sent to me by Marcy Goldman, the published chef and 'friend' who I test bake for.  She's always one who reimagines a recipe:

Sept 17, 2016  Btw -  i am making carrot cake for dessert tonight. I thought – everyone loves carrot cake but I always find it a touch tasteless –it’s the raisins, vanilla, cinnamon and icing that make it. Then I thought – also – no one grates raw sweet potato for a sweet potato cake but we do put raw carrots in carrot cake. Light bulb moment. So I par-boiled the carrots and chilled them and then grated them up. Hugely differently colour and taste. I added 2 cups par boiled shredded and 1 cup raw shredded. Then I used half oil (tasteless but makes a moist cake) and half melted unsalted  butter. Wow. What. A. Cake. So often, we simply forget to question certain recipes. This is a whole new carrot cake with far more taste.

Carrot Cake

Cream together 4 eggs,
                          2 cups sugar
                          1 cup oil

Sift and add:  2 cups flour
                      1 t. salt
                      1 t. baking powder
                      2 t. cinnamon
                      1 cups chopped walnuts or pecans
                      2 cups grated carrots.

Grease and flour 9x13" pan,  Bake at 325 for 35-40 minutes

Creamed Cheese Frosting

1 - 8 oz Philly Cream Cheese
1/2-3/4 stick margarine
2 t. vanilla
4 cups powdered sugar

whip and spread on cake

Here is a note that was sent to me by Marcy Goldman, the published chef and 'friend' who I test bake for.  She's always one who reimagines a recipe:

Sept 17, 2016  Btw -  i am making carrot cake for dessert tonight. I thought – everyone loves carrot cake but I always find it a touch tasteless –it’s the raisins, vanilla, cinnamon and icing that make it. Then I thought – also – no one grates raw sweet potato for a sweet potato cake but we do put raw carrots in carrot cake. Light bulb moment. So I par-boiled the carrots and chilled them and then grated them up. Hugely differently colour and taste. I added 2 cups par boiled shredded and 1 cup raw shredded. Then I used half oil (tasteless but makes a moist cake) and half melted unsalted  butter. Wow. What. A. Cake. So often, we simply forget to question certain recipes. This is a whole new carrot cake with far more taste.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Tara Hale's Breakfast Casserole

This is served at every RS sponsored Labor Day breakfast.

8 slices of white bread, buttered on both sides and cut into 1" squares....Place in a 9x13" pan.

Brown 1 pound of breakfast sausage, drain and place over the bread squares.

Next layer  on 1-1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese.

Finally, Mix 5 eggs, 2 cups milk, 1 t. dry mustard, 1 t. salt, and 1/2 t. pepper and pour over the pan.

THIS NEEDS TO SIT FOR 8 HOURS OR OVER NIGHT.

Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes UNCOVERED until set.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Chef Tell's **Coffee Cake Internationale

Patsy owned these 2 pans forever and loves this coffee cake. When she started giving her stuff away she asked me what I wanted.  I asked for these pans.  And sure enough she was right. This recipe makes an amazing breakfast cake.  I could eat the batter right out of the mixing bowl.


You will need two 9"x2" cake pans.

3/4 cup butter
1-1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1/2 t. almond extract
3 cups flour
1-1/2 t. baking soda
1 8oz container sour cream
1 can (21 oz) cherry fruit filling
Streusel Topping (below)
PAM cooking spray

Streusel Topping
Combine 1/2 cup flour, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1/2 t. cinnamon. Cut in 1/4 cup butter until crumbly

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Spray two 9" round cake pans with Pam.

Cream butter and sugar.  Beat in eggs until mixture is very light and fluffy.  Add extract. Combine floured soda; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream. Divide batter evenly in pans, spreading cherry Fruit Filling on top.  Sprinkle streusel topping over cherry filling.

Bake 25-30 minutes until cake tests done.

**Chef Tell was one of the first culinary celebrities, giving cooking demonstrations on television beginning in the 1970s.  Born Friedman Paul Erhardt in Germany in 1943, Chef Tell started his culinary training at the age of 13 1/2. He had a very distinguished career as a chef in Europe before moving to the United States. In 1974, Chef Tell made his first television appearance. He then had his own segment on Evening Magazine and later his own show, In the Kitchen with Chef Tell, on public television. Chef Tell died on October 26, 2007.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Tara Hale's Poppyseed dressing with salad

Lettuce
Green Onion
Tomato
Cucumber
1 pt box strawberries, sliced
1 orange, optional
sliced almonds, candied
feta or goat cheese

DRESSING

1T poppy seeds
1/2 cup mayo
1/4 cup sugar
2 T apple cider vinegar

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Jan Warren's Salad Dressing

1 cup canola oil
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
2 t. sugar
2 . salt
1/8 t. pepper
4 dashes hot sauce for color

Mix extremely well and keep in covered quart jar.  like a SWEET ITALIAN

Monday, August 1, 2016

20 minute BLT pasta salad

The Seibolds invited us and a few other families for a BBQ and swim party.  I was asked to bring a pasta or potato salad...and I really don't make them. BUT...I found this to be quick and easy and so delicious....



http://bakerbynature.com/20-minute-blt-pasta-salad/

20-Minute BLT Pasta Salad
Ingredients
  • 1 pound bow tie pasta
  • 1 cup Kraft Zest Italian Salad Dressing (Kraft Zesty Italian now has even more herbs & spices!)
  • 1/2 cup Kraft Creamy Ranch (The Classic Ranch is now creamier, with more buttermilk and savory herbs.)
  • 1 pound thick cut bacon, fried until crispy then cut into strips or crumbled (I think strips looks prettier, but it *is more work)
  • 2 large ripe tomatoes, diced (heirlooms work great here if you can get your hands on them)
  • 10 leaves of crispy romaine lettuce, washed / dried / and cut chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 1 VERY small onion red onion, diced
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes.
  2. Drain pasta and rinse under cold water until cool.
  3. While the water is coming to a boil, heat a skillet over medium heat, add bacon strips, and cook until crispy, about 4 minutes on each side. Transfer bacon to a paper towel lined plate.
  4. Place cooled pasta in a large serving bowl; set aside.
  5. In a small bowl combine zesty Italian dressing and ranch, mix well. Add dressing to pasta and toss well to coat pasta.
  6. Add bacon, lettuce, tomato, and onion to the pasta bowl, mix well to combine, and season with salt and pepper as desired. Serve at once, or chill until needed.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Egg Rolls ala Christina Belanger

Today Cara and I crossed the street and learned how to make Kristina's egg rolls.  Fun afternoon.


These are mind made 1 August 2016

Ingredients:
2# ground beef
2 whole garlics (not just cloves), smashed by knife into pieces
1 head green cabbage. sliced thin
2 large onions, sliced in half, sliced then, then sliced in half again
6+ carrots, peeled and grated
Oyster Sauce (this was Panda brand, sold at our Giant Eagle)**be sure to sue Panda brand because it's thick.  If you use another brand and it's not thick then you will need to use more.
Pepper
sesame oil
Egg roll wrappers (3 packages..NASOYA brand from Marc's)
2 egg, whipped
Canola oil

Cook the ground beef and when halfway done, add the garlic.

Combine the cabbage, onions, carrots in a large bowl and pour boiling water over the whole bowl, submerging the mixture and mixing it til it softens.  Kristina even put the bowl on the burner to continue the process.

Cool the meat and the cabbage mixture and add pepper.  Add pepper to the cabbage mixture.  NOW COMES THE HARD PART.  YOU MUST SQUEEZE OUT EVERY LAST DROP OF GREASE/WATER FROM THE MEAT AND THE CABBAGE.  I MEAN ALL THE MOISTURE.  NOT A DROP SHOULD BE LEFT.

Add approximately 10 plops of the oyster sauce.

Mix the meat with the cabbage and toss til mixed well and aerated and this rather dries out the mixture before rolling.

Add 2 large serving spoons of sesame oil using gloves to protect hands from the oil.  Taste at this point to see if it tastes ok.

now form this whole thing into a 'mountain' or mound.

To Roll:

Take out a wrapper, flour side up and on a diamond shape.  Add a spoonful of the mixture toward the bottom half, fold up the bottom point and as you tuck it under the mixture squeeze or press it back.  Fold in the sides and then with finger, smooth on the egg and roll to the top tip, being sure all is in rolled up.  If a hole appears, use a piece of another wrapper and cover it with egg and then smooth it on the hole, being sure to make it tights.

Heat Canola oil in a pan on the stove, Gently place a few eggs rolls in the pan and turn til golden.  Drain on a paper towel.

made nearly 60 egg rolls

If too many are rolled and you need to freeze them:  place them in the oil just til the wrappers seal, and are NOT brown  Remove them and drain, cool and then freeze.  When ready to use, take out of freezer, thaw and then finish boiling in oil.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Taco Stuffed Pasta Shells

Ingredients

12
uncooked jumbo pasta shells
1
medium onion, finely chopped 
1
pound lean ground beef 
1 1/2
teaspoons chili powder
1
package (3 ounces) cream cheese 
3/4
cup Old El Paso™ taco sauce
1
cup shredded Colby-Monterey Jack cheese (4 ounces)
1/2
cup crushed corn chips 
4
green onions, sliced
1/2
cup sour cream

Directions 

  • 1 Heat oven to 350° F. Spray 9-inch square baking dish with cooking spray. Cook and drain pasta shells as directed on package. 
  • 2 In 10-inch skillet, cook ground beef and onion over medium-high heat 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beef is brown; drain.
  • 3 Stir chili powder, cream cheese and 1/4 cup of the taco sauce into the beef mixture. Heat over medium-low heat 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until cheese is melted. Remove from heat.
  • 4 Fill pasta shells with beef mixture, using about 2 tablespoons for each shell. Place filled shells in dish. Pour remaining taco sauce over shells.
  • 5 Cover; bake 20 minutes. Remove dish from oven; uncover. Sprinkle cheese and corn chips over shells. Bake about 10 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Garnish pasta shells with sour cream and green onions.