Saturday, April 25, 2009

I found my meatball

I have found many recipes on Simply Recipes that I have kept in my library of favorites. But this one for her meatballs is just the best..............and when my sweet husband raves about a new recipe I know I have a winner.

The addition of ricotta cheese makes for a great taste in my humble opinion. And yes I did add freshly grated parmesan cheese once plated. But lately I have been so bad about taking any photos while cooking I just jumped the gun a bit. I opened a new bottle of wine from a local vineyard we just happened to visit here in Arizona. Beautiful winery and if you like dark red wines you would like this CABERNET SAUVINGNON

Back to the recipe if y'all like meatballs I think you might like this recipe. The recipe makes a bunch so we will be having meatball subs for lunch and the rest I froze.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Is this decadent...............

photo from the food network site cause mine turned out horrible

oh my you betcha it is chocolate over the top decadent, evil and a tad wicked.

Flipping channels awhile back and I heard Giada DeLaurentiis say something to the effect of "be right back with my chocolate honey almond tart". Put the brakes on the remote cause I could wait for that. Now you must like chocolate to be able to handle this decadency. I'll be real honest, this dessert I can only handle in small portions.

Make it and you decide..............

Chocolate Honey Almond Tart

Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis, 2008

Prep Time:
10 min
Inactive Prep Time:
5 hr 20 min
Cook Time:
12 min
Serves: 6 to 8 servings

  • 1/2 stick (2 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, at room temperature, plus extra for coating the pan
  • 9 chocolate graham crackers, 5 1/2-ounces total
  • 2 tablespoons slivered almonds
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Butter the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan.

Place the graham crackers and almonds in the bowl of a food processor. Process until the mixture forms fine crumbs, about 15 to 20 seconds. Add the butter and pulse until incorporated. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 12 minutes. Cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes.

In a small saucepan, whisk the cream and honey together over low heat until the honey has dissolved. Increase the heat to medium and bring the mixture to just below a boil. Place the chocolate chips in a medium bowl. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and stir until the mixture is smooth. Pour the chocolate filling over the prepared crust. Refrigerate for at least 5 hours or preferably overnight.

Loosen the tart from the sides of the pan by running a thin metal spatula around the edge. Unmold the tart and transfer to a serving plate. Cut into wedges and serve.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Being Green; still

To me, "being green" can mean a variety of things. Saving energy or using something I'd have just thrown away and, more often than not in this unstable economy, saving money.

Here is a dessert I prepared recently that hit all those high notes. I was using the gas BBQ and I needed to get it very hot and use all three of the burners so instead of letting that heat go to waste I prepared a skillet full of sliced apples with white and brown sugar, a pinch of salt, cinnamon and about a half stick of butter. For the topping I crushed three homemade biscuits from breakfast. I don't like them reheated and made too many for me and my beloved so this was an alternative tossing them in the trash.

After I'd pulled my dinner from the BBQ I put the skillet, covered with foil, on the grill, turned off the center burner and reduced the heat to 325/350 and closed the lid. After dinner, about 30 minutes I removed the foil and tested the apples. That was enough time to cook them and caramelize the sugars. I set them on a board to cool and when we were ready for dessert just spooned the apples into a bowl.

Really any recipe you have for baked apples or an apple crisp should work but using the biscuits was great. The real work for the grill is the preheating so that was already taken care of cooking our dinner. Plus it cooked while we were eating, no fuss.

Sometimes being green is just taking the time to think about how you are cooking.

Share your ideas with us, won't you?

Friday, April 03, 2009

Bite the cookie

Sometimes I become obsessed with food and make and remake recipes until I like them. Cookies are on the Hit Parade right now so bear with me, folks.

I adore cookies, all types, flavors, and sizes. If I'm thumbing through a magazine cookie photos will make me stop, asses the recipe, and tear it out for later. I've piles of snippets stuck in the back of my cook book. Someday I'll organize them, ha!

Let me sing the praises of the cookie. Easily stored in a variety of containers, put in a slice of bread alongside cookies you want to stay soft, you don't need a fancy jar though I enjoy my crock. You don't need a plate or a fork or any fussy presentation; hands work great. It's portable, you can walk by the cookie jar, on your way to the gym, and snag one or three. They are a favorite of all ages, cultures, and cooks. I bet your family has its favorite and it's time you made them some right now.

Here is my latest Vanilla Pecan Refrigerator Cookies. I can't say where I got this recipe but I do enjoy having a log of refrigerator cookies in the freezer. I can bake the entire recipe or maybe just a dozen for my beloved and me. He likes them, too. Though shortbread cookies are my all-time favorite these little gems are easy, quick and delicious. I've been going for more of a crispy cookie lately and, since there is only white sugar, they fill that order. I used butter but if you use shortening they might be a bit crispier; I'll try that next time.

Vanilla Pecan Refrigerator Cookies

1 cup unsalted butter or shortening
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 tablespoons vanilla (yes, this is correct)
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped pecans (nice if you toast them)

Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and beat well after each. Add the vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl. Use a spoon to stir in the flour mixture into the sugar mixture. Add the pecans, mixing well. Shape into three rolls about 2 inches in diameter and wrap in was paper. refrigerate at least two hours or up to three days. You can also freeze.

Bake in 375 oven. Cut the dough into 1/4 inch slices 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. Bake about 10 minutes until lightly browned. Cool on wire rack and store in airtight container. Makes about 6 dozen.

Editor's note: My husband usually can take or leave cookies, I know, why would I marry someone like that? With these he can't keep out of the cookie crock. It has quite a heavy lid so I can always tell when he's in there. I asked what he liked about them and he couldn't put his finger on the reason. Finally, who needs a reason to eat a cookie!

Let us know your family favorite cookie.