Tuesday, January 25, 2011

New Arrivals... It's a Boy and It's a Girl !!!!

One of my close friends from college and her husband welcomed their fourth child to the family a bouncing baby boy named Davis Christian. In that same week my co-worker/soror gave birth to her second child a beautiful baby girl... So to welcome the new arrivals I made them customized handmade cookies in their honor... Enjoy !

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Pretty Cookies.............

No Fail Sugar Cookie Recipe
(Adapted from Fancy Flours---Yields 8 doz)

6c All-Purpose Flour
3tsp Baking Powder
1tsp Salt
2c Sugar
2c Butter (4 sticks room temp)
2 Eggs
2 tsp Vanilla (or any other flavoring)

1. Cream butter, sugar(5 min) then add eggs one at a time until blended add flavoring.
2. Mix in dry ingredients in seperate bowel, then add to butter mixture one cup at a time.
3. Put handful of dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll to desired thickness(repeat) put on cookie sheet and lay in fridge for at least 10 minutes or more to settle( it will be easier to cut out).
4. Preheat Oven 350 F
5. Begin cutting and assembling on cookie sheets.
6 Bake 8-10 minutes and cool on rack.

You can either leave the cookies plain or decorate however you please(royal icing, regular buttercream, chocolate dip etc...) Enjoy ;o)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Fried Green Beans and Wasabi-Horseradish Dip (TGI version)

Fried Green Beans and Wasabi Horseradish Dip
(adapted from TGI Friday's)

1 pound of fresh or frozen green beans
1 C of beer( i used bud light lime)
1 C of all purpose flour
2 tsp of salt
1/2 ground pepper

1. Heat the oil until 350 F
2. Whisk all the ingredients, to form the batter.
3. Dip the beans in the batter and drop into the fryer
4. Let them cook until golden brown.

Wasabi Horseradish Dip
* the orignal recipe called for "specialty ingredients". I used the following:

4Tbps of Private Selection Wasabi-Horseradish(kroger brand)
4Tbps of Buttermilk Ranch(any brand name)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
* I added in 1/2 caynenne pepper for extra kick, but the dip is okay with out it. Now there are all kinds of reciepes floating around the web of the dip and batter.


Veggie and Turkey Lasagna (No pasta noodles)...

Turkey Lasagna (with no pasta noodles).
(the other recipe adapted from Medifast)
6 oz ground turkey

1 garlic clove, minced

1 T dried parsley flakes
1 T dried basil
1/8 tsp salt

1 can diced tomatoes, drained( add in ½ can or whole depending on serving size, it’s a little runny without).*** you can also add in a half a can of tomato paste to thicken.

3/4 C. 1% cottage cheese( trust me you won’t miss the ricotta).

4 slices or 3 oz. low-fat mozzarella cheese

1 Tbsp dried parsley flakes

2 Tbsp eggbeaters

1-2 small to medium zucchini squash

* When I did my version I used yellow squash and zucchini for the “noodles”. I also used baby spinach, portabella mushrooms, red onions, red, yellow and green bell peppers. I love veggies… By the time I was finished it was enough for a 9x13 pan. It wasn’t a whole lot of meat, but I really couldn’t tell.
 In a large skillet, brown meat with garlic. Drain any fat and add the next 4 ingredients (parsley, basil, salt, tomatoes). Simmer uncovered for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

1. Slice zucchini lengthwise in strips. This will be your "noodles." I include the peel but don't use the core with the seeds.

2. Boil in hot water for 3-5 minutes, depending on how thick your slices are. Drain on paper towels.

3. Combine in a bowl cottage cheese, eggs, and the other T dried parsley

4. Now it's time to start assembling! In a smallish greased bread loaf pan, I like to start with a sprinkling of meat on the bottom.

Next add a layer of zucchini "noodles."

5. Top with half the cottage cheese mixture
6. Add almost half the mozzarella cheese

7. Cover with half of the meat mixture.

8. Repeat layers - zucchini, cottage cheese, mozzarella cheese, meat. Top with the last of the mozzarella cheese or I also think a sprinkling of parmesan cheese would be good here.

9. Bake 20-30 minutes at 350 degrees until the cheese melts and lasagna looks bubbly.

10. Wait 10-15 minutes before serving (if you can!)

Perfect with your favorite glass of red wine...( Zinfandel  or Merlot)

Eggplant Parmesan....

I've always wanted to try eggplant, but wasn't sure how to fix it. A co-worker of mine is currently on the Medifast diet(google it if your interested), its kind of like nutrisystem. She gave me a copying of her recipe's to experiment with. So far I have tried to two of the recipes. I substituted the medifast ingredients with regular  food (healthier). I was quite surprised how DELICIOUS it was. I'm no Iron Chef, but I can do a little something in the kitchen. Below I will provide you with the recipe for Eggplant Parmesan, feel free to use what ever substitutions:

Eggplant Parmesan

1 (based on at least 4 servings) peeled, sliced eggplant
1/3 c of Marinara( I used reg. Barilla with olive oil)
3/4c- give or take depending how cheesy you want it Soy Mozzarella Cheese( I used Kraft Mozzarella)
1 egg whit + 1 tsp of water(well mixed)
1/2 bag of Veggie Crackers( I used Special K Savory Herb) + 4 TB Parmesan cheese( either freshly shredded or the kind in the can).

1. Assemble ingredients, lightly spray non-stick skillet and heat skillet(medium heat). Preheat oven to 350 F
2. Dip the eggplant slices in the egg white/water mixture then in the crackers/Parmesan"breading"(I blended the crackers and the Parmesan cheese in my Ninja). Placed dipped eggplant slices in the pan.
3. Cook eggplant slices until golden brown.
4. Dip cooked eggplant slices in the Marinara Sauce, coating well. Place coated slices in small casserole dish. Put any remaining Marinara(if any slices left).
5. Top eggplant slices with shredded cheese. Tent casserole dish with foil so cheese doesn't stick to foil.
6. Bake, foil covered, at 350 degrees until eggplant is tender throughout- About 20 min


Saturday, January 1, 2011

More Diaper Cakes...

A while back I mentioned that in addition to baking and event planning. Below is a sample of the diaper cakes that I have been able to create over the past few months.....

 Busy Bee

 Elephants, Elephants....

It's Froggy Time

Sugar and Spice

 Simply Tropical..

Happy New Year...................


I celebrated the New Year with the person that means the most to me, " my lil diva". I hope everyone had a blessed ending to 2010 and is excited about the wonderful things to come in 2011..
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