Sunday, June 20, 2010

Strawberry Spinach Salad

This is one of our favorites. I love it in the summer!

2 TBSP. butter
1 1/2 cups pecan halves
1 cup sugar
Fresh spinach
2 cups thinly sliced celery
1 pint fresh strawberries, sliced

1/3 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
3 green onions, chopped
3/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 cups vegetable oil
1 1/2 TBSP. poppy seeds

In a saucepan, melt butter and sugar and add pecan halves. Cook until sugar is dissolved. Pour out onto a lightly greased piece of tinfoil. Let cool.

Wash spinach, celery, strawberries and red onion and cut up and put in a bowl. Add sugared pecans and toss with dressing.

Dressing: Place first five ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Slowly add oil and mix until creamy. Remove and add poppy seeds. Chill. Toss with salad right before serving.

Father's Day Brunch

For Fathers Day I decided to try something different. I made Warren strawberry creme filled french toast. I've never tried making stuffed french toast before, but I certainly will again. I took one bite and just savored it. It was heavenly. We all loved it! I can't wait for a special occasion to make them again. That's how much I loved them.

2 loaves French Bread
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 jar strawberry jam (I used the yummy freezer jam)
Fresh strawberries
12 eggs
1/3 cup half and half
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla

Cut your french bread into 1 1/4" slices and press down the centers for a place to hold the filling. Smear inside with a good amount of cream cheese and then some jam and fresh strawberries. Place a lid on top (a matching sized piece of french bread). Make the egg mixture by mixing the eggs, vanilla, cinnamon and half and half. Soak the bread in the mixture for at least one minute and then brown in a little bit of butter on your hot griddle. Dust with powdered sugar and serve with maple syrup. Yum!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Garlic Wet Rub

I made up this garlic rub tonight to try on our steak. It was SO yummy! Apply it heavy, because there is no such thing as too much! (okay, so my opinion anyway!). Sorry, I don't have a picture of this one! We tried some of the leftovers on salmon the next night. It was great too. If you love garlic, you should love this.

7 1/2 tsp. minced garlic
2 1/4 tsp. salt
3 TBSP. olive oil
1 1/2 TBSP. lemon juice
3 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
3/4 tsp. pepper

Put all of the ingredients in your blender and blend to a liquid paste. Baste on your meat while grilling.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Glazed Pork

This is a great tasting glaze! We followed the instructions as they are written here, but I have to tell you, for me the flavor wasn't quite strong enough. So I actually took the pork chops and dumped the glaze on top in a pan and covered it with tinfoil and baked it in the oven on low heat 225 for an hour just to tenderize it further and soak up more of the glaze. It was delicious. Next time I'm just going to dump it right in my crockpot and cook it over a pork roast. I think it would be great on chicken too. Ingredients:
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1 cup apple juice
8 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon ground ginger
salt and pepper to taste
4 teaspoons cornstarch
1 cup water
6 boneless pork chops

1. Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat.
2. In a small saucepan, combine brown sugar, apple juice, oil, soy sauce, ginger, salt , and pepper. Bring to boil. Combine water and cornstarch in small bowl, and whisk into brown sugar mixture. Stir until thick.
3. Brush grate lightly with oil before placing pork chops on the grill. Cook over hot coals for 10 to 12 minutes, turning once. Brush with sauce just before removing chops from grill. Serve with remaining sauce.

Texas Sheet Cake

For whatever reason, I love making these on Sunday after church. They are so moist and rich! Bring to a boil:
2 squares margarine
4 TBSP. cocoa
1 cup water
Pour over:
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix well, add:
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla and nuts (optional).

Beat till smooth. Grease and flour pan. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes. Fits in those big cookie sheets.

Frosting: Boil: 1 square margarine, 4 cups powdered sugar, 4 TBSP. cocoa, 6 TBSP. milk. Spread on cake while it is hot.

Holiday Jello

Perfect for any patriotic occasion! Perfect for any summer potluck salad. If you don't want the patriotic theme, just sprinkle sliced fruit on top. It's so good, it could be dessert. 1 qt. strawberries
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1 pkg. large jello or 2 small pkg. (red color)
Ice Cubes
1 cup cold water
1 pkg. pound cake, cut into 10 slices
1 1/3 cups blueberries, divided
2 pkg. (8 oz. each) Cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1 tub (8 oz) cool whip, thawed

Slice 1 cup of strawberries; set aside. Halve remaining 3 cups strawberries, set aside.
Stir boiling water into dry gelatin mix in large bowl at least 2 min. until completely dissolved. Add enough ice to cold water to measure 2 cups. Add to gelatin; stir until ice is completely melted. Refrigerate 5 min. or until slightly thickened (consistency of egg whites)
Line bottom of 13x9 dish with cake slices. Add sliced strawberries and 1 cup of blueberries to thickened jello. Stir gently. Spoon over cake slices. Refrigerate 4 hours or until firm.

Beat cream cheese and sugar in large bowl with wire whisk or electric mixer until well blended. Gently stir in whipped topping. Spread over glatin. Arrange strawberry halfes on cream mixture for "stripes" of flag. Arrange remaining 1/3 cup blueberries on cream cheese mixture for "stars". Store in refrigerator.

My New Favorite Rice

This has now become my new favorite rice!
6 cups chicken broth, divided
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 pound portobello mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 pound white mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 shallots, diced
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
sea salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 tablespoons finely chopped chives
4 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1. In a saucepan, warm the broth over low heat.
2. Warm 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in the mushrooms, and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Remove mushrooms and their liquid, and set aside.
3. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to skillet, and stir in the shallots. Cook 1 minute. Add rice, stirring to coat with oil, about 2 minutes. When the rice has taken on a pale, golden color, pour in wine, stirring constantly until the wine is fully absorbed. Add 1/2 cup broth to the rice, and stir until the broth is absorbed. Continue adding broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring continuously, until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is al dente, about 15 to 20 minutes.
4. Remove from heat, and stir in mushrooms with their liquid, butter, chives, and parmesan. Season with salt and pepper to taste.