Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Brown Sugar-Spice Cupcakes With Cream Cheese Frosting

This yummy dessert is based on my sour cream pound cake. For a twist, I used brown sugar instead of granulated to add a caramel flavor to the cake and to stand up against the cinnamon and nutmeg in the batter. The frosting is basic but delicious. Enjoy!

Brown Sugar-Spice Cupcakes With Cream Cheese Frosting
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 block cream cheese, softened
2 cups brown sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
Cream Cheese Frosting

1. Beat butter and cream cheese until creamy; beat in brown sugar. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, until blended after each addition. Add in vanilla.
2. Combine flour and next 5 ingredients; gradually add to butter mixture alternately with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Scoop batter into lighly greased muffin cups.
3. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until done. Cool in pans 10 minutes; remove from pans, and cool completely. Spread Cream Cheese Frosting over tops of cooled cupcakes.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 block cream cheese, softened
2 to 3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 to 2 tsp. milk

1. Beat butter and cream cheese until fluffy; gradually beat in powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat in milk until spreading consistency.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Peach Muffins

Andy’s parents have been helping us around the house for the past couple of days. Because we just moved on Thursday, I haven’t been to the grocery store or planned any meals. We are so tired and I knew no one would want to go out for breakfast, so I came up with this muffin recipes using what was on hand. I am out of all-purpose flour, but cake flour was a good substitute. Enjoy!

Peach Muffins
1 1/2 cup cake flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 cup melted butter
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 peaches, peeled and thinly sliced

1. Combine flour and next 5 ingredients. Stir in butter and next 2 ingredients until smooth; gently stir in peaches. Scoop batter into lightly greased muffin cups.
2. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes or until done.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Menu 22: Pancakes and Bacon

We've moved! Andy and I have finally moved into the house we've been renovating since October. We still have a lot of work to do, but at least we can live here now. The most exciting thing to me is my new (really, it's used; we bought it on Craig's list) stove. It has two electric ovens, 6 gas burners, and an electric griddle. On our first Saturday in the house, I made Buttermilk Pancakes to celebrate. Enjoy!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Watermelon Sorbet

How refreshing for a hot July day! The watermelon that came in the market basket this week was really big and I needed a new way to prepare it. This sorbet is based on one from Giada DeLaurentis. Enjoy!

Watermelon Sorbet
1 (2-pound) piece seedless watermelon, rind removed and cut into chunks
3/4 cup club soda or ginger ale, chilled
Juice from 3 limes
1/2 cup grenadine

Place watermelon and remaining ingredients in a bowl; puree with immersion blender until smooth. Pour into an ice-cream maker. and freeze according to the manufacturer's instructions for about 30 minutes. Pour into a bowl, seal lid, and place in freezer for 15 more minutes.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Menu 21: Tomato Sandwiches

One of the farmers at our local market has been selling beautiful heirloom tomatoes this summer. There is nothing Andy and I like better on a hot summer day than a tomato sandwich, and A&P Farms heirlooms have made the lowly sandwich perfect. We have eaten this meal for lunch and dinner more times than I can count over the past few weeks. Everyone has an opinion about how to make a tomato sandwich, and this is mine. Lightly toasted sourdough bread, Duke’s mayo, thick-sliced tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Enjoy!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Peach Pie

The peaches in my farmers market basket this week were so fragrant, I had to make a dessert with them. This pie is very simple; the piecrust is the same one I use for chicken pot pie. The peaches were so sweet, I didn’t have to add much sugar to them. It’s the perfect foil for vanilla ice cream. Andy declared this his new favorite. Enjoy!

Peach Pie
1 lb. peaches, peeled and sliced
1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 recipes Pastry (add 1/2 tsp. cinnamon to the dough and replace some of water with peach juice)
1 egg

1. Combine peaches and next 2 ingredients; let stand 10 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon, and use juice in pastry.
2. Fit one pastry circle into a deep-dish pie plate; prick pastry with fork. Bake at 400° for 8 minutes.
3. Spoon in peach mixture; top with pastry, and crimp edges to seal. Brush with lightly beaten egg. Cut slits in top of crust.
4. Bake at 400° for 15 to 20 minutes or until crust is done.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Menu 20: Beef Stroganoff

I invented this recipe for Grace’s Kitchen to serve in Cordova and it was a hit! Tonight I served it at a local mission, and all the men really liked it. I have no idea if this is like a traditional stroganoff recipe, but it made sense in my head. Beef stew meat is kind of tough, so it needs to be cooked for a while to become tender. If you prefer, you could cook the meat mixture in a slow-cooker and then combine it with the noodles and sour cream. Enjoy!

Beef Stroganoff
2 lb. beef stew meat
Montreal steak seasoning
2 onions, chopped
3 celery ribs, thinly sliced
1 (8-oz.) package mushrooms, thinly sliced (optional)
1 cup beef broth
2 cups light sour cream
1 (16-oz.) bag egg noodles, cooked
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Sprinkle steak seasoning generously over meat; toss. Place onions, celery, and, if desired, mushrooms in a baking pan, and top with meat. Pour in beef broth.
2. Bake at 400° for 2 hours or until tender. Remove from oven, and stir in sour cream and cooked noodles. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Return to oven, and bake 15 more minutes or until thoroughly heated. Serve immediately.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Menu 19: Calabacitas Quesadillas

Tonight I used calabacitas to make quesadillas. You don’t get any easier than layering tortillas with shredded cheese and sautéed veggies. Black Bean Salad was the perfect accompaniment. Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Menu 18: Grilled Burgers

This recipe for potato salad was inspired by the baby new potatoes that came in my farmers market basket this week. The dressing features a combination of mayo and vinegar, which I really like. Fresh dill is terrific in this. I served this with grilled burgers and Watermelon-and-Tomato Salad. Enjoy!

Dill Potato Salad
1 lb. baby new potatoes, cut in half if necessary
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
2 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh dill
Salt and pepper

1. Place potatoes in large pot; cover with water. Bring to a boil, add in a generous amount of salt, and cook until tender. Drain and rinse with cool water.
2. Combine mayonnaise and next 3 ingredients; toss with potatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.