Monday, June 28, 2010

Peach Blueberry Cobbler

Check out this recipe on my new blog: One Sassy Housewife
It's super yummy summery inspiration! :)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Parm Frites

(who knows what language that is...?!?!)
This is more of an idea than a recipe... but I an still including it. A couple years ago I visited my friend in Chicago and we went to TASTE. It was awesome. One of our favorite little vendors was this italian resturaunt serving parmesan fries... basically just dumped loads of fresh grated parmesan, garlic, and parsley over hot fresh fries... and it was yummy. Also, one of Z's favorite resturaunts always puts grated parmesan on their fries, so I'm getting on the band wagon. These make a great side for Meatball Subs... which is what we had last night for dinner.

Seasoned french fries
Italian parsley, finely chopped
Garlic salt

I purchase the frozen seasoned fries from the grocery store (becuase I am too lazy to make and season my own) and deep fry them (prepare as stated on package). Immediately (while still super hot) sprinkle with just a tiny bit of garlic salt, and grate a generous amount of parmesan cheese over the top, sprinkle with parsely and toss it all together. Enjoy as a side to a good meal, or a stand alone snack! Yummy!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Grilled Peaches

So while we were on our honeymoon we were on a drive to the fancy expensive real-estate part of the island to dream and 'pick out' our someday-beach-house, and we drove by a farmstand... I found myself squealing for Z to stop and he obliged, pulling into the sandy lot. We bought fresh sweet peaches and berries, and I know it's dirty, but I dove into them as soon as we got in the car. Yuummmmy. Anywho, we made it back to KS with a few of the smallish peaches I didn't consume during the week, and tonight I while I was grilling the rest of my dinner I thought, hey why not? I mean a lot of people grill fruit--
Okay, so results were the happiest 'why not' I have ever created. Drool-worthy. Actually, don't even wait until the next time you already have the grill going, go ahead and fire it up just for these sweeties... it's worth it.
whipped cream cheese
fresh mint leaves

Cut peaches in half and removes pits. Brush with melted butter and place face up on a medium-ish heated grill. After Approx 5 mins flip to the faces down, and grill this side for 5 mins. flip face up again, rotate to create crossed grill marks. After 5 mins flip face down and rotate for grill marks. Remove peaches to a plate and put about a teaspoon of cream cheese (i like using the 'whipped' cream cheese, it's lighter) and drizzle with honey. Garnish with fresh mint...
Beautiful and ridiculously yummy summer dessert. You're welcome.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Mint Chocolate Cupcakes (with homemade Mint Chocolate Buttercream Frosting)

Were they amazing? Yes.
Did I take a picture? No.
Was that a mistake? Yes. Because they looked super cool too.
Make them. Go to your kitchen NOW and start baking, I promise you will never regret this decision.

8 Tbsp (1 stick, 4 ounces) unsalted butter
1/2 cup baking cocoa
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons mint extract
1/2 cup sour cream
Mint chocolate buttercream icing (recipe follows)
Andes chocolate mints (12) for garnish

Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare a muffin tin by lining it with cupcake liners. Use a double boiler or add an inch or two of water to a medium sized saucepan and place a metal bowl over it, bringing the water to a simmer. Add butter (cut into chunks), chocolate, cocoa to the bowl. As the butter and chocolate melt, whisk until the ingredients are well combined and smooth. Remove from heat and let cool.
In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and baking powder.
In a large bowl (can use a mixer), beat the eggs. Add the salt, the sugar, the mint extract and beat until well combined. Slowly add in the chocolate butter mixture and beat until combined.
Add in half of the sifted flour mixture, mix to combine. Mix in the sour cream. Mix in the remaining flour mixture.
Spoon the batter evenly into the lined muffin cups. Place in oven in middle rack. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until tops spring back when touched and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Let cool in muffin tin on a rack for 15 minutes. Then gently remove cupcakes from the tin and let cool completely before frosting. (makes 1 dozen cupcakes)

Mint chocolate buttercream frosting: swoon
1 stick butter (unsalted), room temperature (room temp is super important!)
1 Tbsp milk
1/2 teaspoon mint extract
1 packet liquid baking chocolate
2+ cups powdered sugar

In an electric mixer, beat the butter at medium speed until creamy. Beat in milk, mint extract, and baking chocolate. Slowly add in the powdered sugar on low speed, (1/2 cup at a time...) stopping periodically to scrape sides of the bowl. Beat until desired consistancy... light and fluffy! Taste and add more mint extract if it isn't minty enough for you, or powdered sugar if it isn't sweet enough for you. (now try to resist eating the whole bowl with a spoon before any of it makes it onto cupcakes)
Frost cupcakes and top with an andes mint halved diagonally (so you have little triangles). So cute and SOOOO yummy it's ridiculous.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Cream Puffs

I am seriously debating whether or not to actually post this recipe... just because cream puffs seem like a lot of work, but in reality are embarrassingly simple. Especially if you take the short cuts I did... no one even has to know they are easy (except I just ratted myself out...) There are a couple different options you can do for filling here, you can use just straight whipped cream, the chocolate cream recipe I have included, or a 'custard' style filling which is hands down the favorite in my family.

Plus, they look so pretty all plated with a little whipped cream, and WOW these went fast on Easter! :)

Pate a choux (Pastry):

1 cup water
1 stick unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 to 4 eggs, plus 1 for egg wash

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. In a medium saucepan, bring the water, butter, salt, and granulated sugar to a rolling boil over medium-high heat. Immediately remove from heat and add all the flour at once, stirring until all the flour is incorporated, about a minute. Return the pan to the heat and cook, stirring, about 30 more seconds to evaporate some of the moisture.
Scrape the mixture into a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix at medium speed. With the mixer running, adding 1 egg at a time until just incorporated. Stop to scrape the bowl after each egg. After 3 eggs dough should be smooth and glossy, and kinda think but fall slowly from the beaters when you lift them out of the bowl. If the dough is still clinging to the beaters, add the remaining egg and mix until incorporated.
Pipe the dough onto the baking sheet, (you can use a pastry bag, or I used a sandwich bag with the corner snipped off, and no tip... I'm a little ghetto like that) Make about 2-inch diameter rounds. Whisk the remaining egg with 1 1/2 teaspoons water and brush the surface of the rounds with the egg wash to knock down the points (you may not use all the egg wash). Bake 15 mins, then reduce the heat to 375 degrees F and bake until puffed up, and light golden brown, about 10-15 minutes more. Try not to open the oven door too often during the baking. Let cool on the baking sheet.


3 cups cold heavy cream, plus 1-2 tablespoons
2 teaspoons of GOOD vanilla (none of that imitation stuff...)
3-4 tablespoons powdered sugar
4 oz semi-sweet chocolate pieces
1 pkg Vanilla flavor Jello Pudding mix (don't judge)

Whipped cream: Whip the cream until you have soft peaks, add 2 tablespoons of sugar and vanilla. Whip about 30 more seconds to incorporate and stiffen cream. Set aside approx 1/3 of the whipped cream.
Chocolate whipped cream: Melt the chocolate in the microwave or double boiler until it is smooth and thin, add 1 tablespoon of whipping cream and stir well, fold in a little bit of the whipped cream to temper the mixture, then in a separate bowl, fold the chocolate mixture into approx one cup of the whipped cream. set aside."Custard" filling: Mix the vanilla pudding according to the instructions on the package. When set, mix 1 cup of the pudding with approx 1 cup of the whipped cream. Fold it together gently, set aside.
To fill the cream puffs use a piping bag (or I have a little decorator, injector thing I stole from my dad that works AWESOME.) or simply cut off tops, spoon in filling and replace the tops... but it looks much prettier if you pipe it in... and i like to garnish mine with chocolate syrup, powdered sugar, and fresh fruit... as pictured above. :) Happy Baking!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Boyfriend Lasagna

One of the greatest challenges of my life right now is the picky eater I am engaged to marry. It is devastatingly difficult to make a meal for someone who has such a small base of foods they are willing to consume. So I have made a goal to create some non-offensive recipes using things we already know he likes, and only adding one new element at a time. This plan, should it actually work, means he will be trying new things but not in a way that is overwhelming.
For this recipe I started with something he likes: Chicken Alfredo. Used those elements in a different format: Lasagna. and added a new ingredient for him to make a decision on: Spinach. So basically, It's a Chicken Florentine Lasagna-ish deal. But because it was designed just for Z, i am calling it Boyfriend Lasagna. (Z would probably argue that at this point in our relationship I should call it Fiance Lasagna, but I will probably always call him boyfriend.)

4-5 ish cups of good alfredo sauce (Dale Sass has a great recipe, maybe I will post it later)
1 pkg chopped frozen spinach
15 oz ricotta cheese
2-3 tblespoons chopped garlic
3 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup shredded parmesan
1-2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast
optional: baby portebella mushrooms
1 pkg lasagna noodles(I buy them, but I prefer the 'homemade' style without the ruffle edges, easier to work with!)
2 tblps olive oil
Salt and pepper, italian seasonings

Thaw frozen spinach and squeeze all the liquid out. Mix the ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup of mozz cheese, parmesan cheese, a couple tablespoons of garlic (to taste), spinach, and salt and pepper (to taste) together and set aside.
Heat oil in a skillet and add chopped garlic. Chop the chicken into very small pieces and add to the pan, sauteeing until just chooked. Season with salt, pepper, and italian seasoning to taste. Add chopped bella mushrooms, if desired, and sautee another minute or two. And set aside.
Spray your pan with some no-stick cooking spray and start assembling by putting down a layer of noodles, then a layer of the ricotta/spinach mixture. Lay down another layer of noodles, and spoon the chicken mixture evenly over, cover with alfredo sauce, and a layer of mozz cheese. Repeat until your pan is full and/or you are out of filling. End with a heavy layer of mozz cheese over the top and bake at 350 covered with foil for approx 45 mins. Uncover, and bake amother 10-15 until cheese is melty and getting a little brown. (I tend to bake my lasagnas on the long side, becuase the Sass fam likes crunchy corners... if you don't, shorten the baking time so it doesn't get quite as done around the edges! )

***NOTE: I made this dish for my parents and foodie friend April, who all realy liked it!!! Success! Zachary didn't try any and informed me that whenever he tastes spinach it makes him want to puke, so he won't be eating anything I make that has spinach in it. Fail.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Roasted Pork Tenderloin and Roasted Garlic Smashed Potatoes for your Valentine

Our Valentine's meal was a success! Z ate all of 3 out of 4 things on his plate. Said he liked it-- if he had ordered it at a restaurant he would get it again. SCORE. Actually, I thought it was pretty darn tasty too... but the best part of the entire meal might be the anticipation from the way the house smells when you are roasting things with fresh herbs and garlic... oh my goodness, it was to die for. :)

Herb Roasted Pork Tenderloin
1 (4-pound) boneless pork loin (fat still on)
sea salt
fresh cracked black pepper
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme leaves
2 tablespoons minced fresh italian parsley
2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
Place the pork loin on a board and drizzle olive oil over the top, and season liberally with salt and pepper. Rub mustard over entire piece of meat, including fat and ends. Mince garlic and fresh herbs together and roll the meat in herb mixture (make sure it is nice and covered with the herb-y goodness!) Place the meat on a rack in a roasting pan.
Roast the pork for 30 minutes, then reduce the heat to 425 degrees F and roast for an additional half hour. Test for doneness using an instant-read thermometer. When the internal temperature reaches 155 degrees F, remove the roast from the oven. (may require up to an additional 1/2 hour, my oven tends to be on the hot side.) Allow it to sit for about 20 minutes before carving. (It will continue to cook while it rests.) Slice and serve with...

Roasted Garlic Smashed Potatoes
1 head of garlic
1 tblspoon olive oil
4-5 good sized Yukon Gold potatoes, scrubbed clean
4 tblsp butter
1/4 cup heavy cream

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Cut the top 1/3 of your garlic head off (so the head is still in tact but you can see the tops of each clove. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place on a pan (TIP: especially if you are roasting more than one at a time... muffin tins are the perfect size and keep garlic from rolling and sliding around!) and roast in oven for 10-15 mins. (keep an eye on it, when the cloves are very soft and the tops are golden brown. Let cool and then squeeze cloves out of shell/husk/peel/paper/whatever you call that stuff around garlic.
Cut potatoes in chunks and cover with water to boil, season water liberally with salt. Boil until potatoes are still slightly firm, but easy to smash with a fork. Drain and place in a bowl with butter, cream, and roasted garlic cloves... then use your preferred method of smashing (Sasses use an electric mixer, because we are impatient). Mix well, season with salt and pepper to taste.

Share with your honey and ENJOY!