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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Creamy Dijon Steak

Meat and potatoes! You can hardly see the meat under all that creamy sauce, but that's the way it ought to be. After cooking, the beef patties simmer in a creamy dijon and horseradish sauce. The flavors are wonderful. This was approved by my mom and my dad, but even more importantly... it was approved by my sister. Impressive, right?


Ingredients
Makes about 6 steak patties

  • 1/3 cup dry italian style breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 3/4 cup canned cream of mushroom soup
  • 3/4 cup canned cream of chicken soup
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp horseradish
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream (optional)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb ground round or lean ground beef

Directions

  • Combine bread crumbs, egg, and onion in a medium sized bowl.
  • Combine soups, dijon, horseradish, Worcestershire, and heavy cream (optional) in a separate medium sized bowl.
  • Heat olive oil in large skillet (medium heat).
  • Add ground beef and 1/4 cup creamy mixture to the bread crumb mixture. Mix with your hands and make about six steak patties.
  • Cook patties in the skillet over medium until brown on each side and cooked mostly through, roughly four minutes on each side.
  • Once the patties are done, pour creamy mixture into the skillet. Reduce the heat to low, cover the skillet, and simmer for 15 minutes until patties are fully cooked.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas to me!

It's lookin' like I'm going to need to subject myself to some sort of cookbook challenge to work through all these new recipes! I hope all you foodies got what you were hoping for. My family started the day off with Paula Dean's overnight french toast. It called for a half pound of butter. Yeah.. it was good.






Friday, December 23, 2011

Italian Mushroom Pepperoni Sausage Four Cheese Pie

This recipe is from What's Cookin' Italian Style Cuisine. It's one of those amazing toss-everything-in-one-dish kind of meals. I doubled the meat on accident, but it worked out. It turned into a super-meaty Italian-style quiche, and my parents loved it. It's nice to be home for the holidays and have a captive audience to cook for!

I recommend this recipe for people that claim they don't know how to cook. You just brown the meat, mix everything together in a big bowl, pour it in the pre-made deep dish crust, and stick it in the oven for about an hour. Easy peasy. Read the full recipe at What's Cookin' Italian Style Cuisine.


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Southwestern Meaty Mac & Cheese

Warning, this meal is in no way considered "light," nor do I think you could make it light if you tried. I did use skim milk, which thickened surprisingly well, and ground round, but please do not disgrace this recipe with reduced-fat cheese. Enjoy the rich, creamy goodness. The family absolutely loved the dish! This is going in my recipe binder for sure.

This is a meal that requires multitasking. You'll have three different pans going on at once. If you know you can't handle that, I suggest the Quickie Kraft Chili Mac instead. It has very similar flavors, but is much easier to make.



Ingredients
Meat
1 tbsp olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
1 clove of garlic, diced
1 lb ground beef (aim for lower fat percentage, like ground round)
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (with Chipotle seasoning if you can find it) - do NOT drain
8.5 oz canned corn, drained
1 tsp Chipotle/Southwestern spice blend (like Mrs. Dash)

Macaroni
8 oz macaroni
3 tbsp butter
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 1/4 cup milk (I used skim and it thickened just fine)
2 cups shredded cheddar (save some for sprinkling on top)
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
a few dashes hot sauce
2 tsp Dijon mustard

Directions
Meat
  • Heat olive oil in pan on medium heat. Add diced onion and cook halfway (not fully translucent). Add garlic and stir for a few seconds. Add ground beef and cook until browned.
  • Add corn (be sure to drain), diced tomatoes (with juice), and chipotle seasoning. Cover and simmer on low, stirring occasionally for 20 minutes.
Macaroni
  • While meat is simmering, bring a large pan of water to a boil. Cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  • Melt butter in a large pan. Slowly add flour, stirring until fully combined. Heat on medium until sauce comes to a low boil and thickens slightly. Remove from heat and add cheese (saving a small amount to sprinkle on top), stirring until fully melting. Add Worcestershire, hot sauce, and Dijon mustard. 
  • Combine drained macaroni with sauce.
Bringing it all together...
  • Turn on the broiler and let it heat up.
  • Spray 2.5 quart baking dish with cooking spray. Spoon the ground beef mixture into the dish. Cover with macaroni and cheese. Sprinkle with remaining cheddar cheese. 
  • Cook under broiler for a few minutes, until the cheese on top is golden.


Saturday, December 17, 2011

Melting Snowmen Cookies


I first saw a melting snowman cookie when my friend posted a picture on Twitter. After that, I spent so much time on Google Images staring at them. How cute! I filed it away in the back of my mind as an idea for later, but didn't know when I'd make them. As much as I love holiday cooking, this is one of those things you make but don't want to eat. And I'm all about eating.

I came home for winter break and the perfect time presented itself! My mom's third grader's holiday party. Kids will eat anything.. and they did! HEAD FIRST!

Of all the images I found, my favorite were from Crazy Domestic. No special cookie recipe, just Betty Crocker mix and icing, and some random gel icing. These took up a lot more icing than I expected! Buy generously.



Thursday, December 15, 2011

Ninjabread Men Cookie Cutters


Last year Megan saw ninjabread men cookie cutters online and thought it would be a fun craft to try and make some homemade. Like many brilliant ideas, it was left as just that... an idea. I didn't think about them again until I was Christmas shopping for Xavier at ThinkGeek.com. You see, I have a lot of Geek Points. So many, it's a little embarrassing. I finally decided to use a few on myself when I saw the ninjabread men cookie cutters as an option. Unfortunately, they're currently sold out at Think Geek, and the website says more won't be in until February. BUT! I did find them on Perpetual Kid. And they're on sale. Bonus.

They're just cheap little plastic shapes, but how cool are these ninjas? I used the gingerbread cookie recipe from Brown Eyed Baker. I only iced one like the picture from the box, and it was hard working with the negative space! I recommend using a popsicle stick... and patience. It came out pretty good if I do say so myself.


It smelled AMAZING!

Just before popping in the oven.



Monday, December 5, 2011

Meatless Monday: Pasta with Fall Squash & Feta

This is one of those meals that was born of necessity, the mother of invention, right? I just happened to have leftover sage and butternut squash in the fridge...so I decided to put them together and voilĂ , a delicious meal was born! I cooked the squash in a Mediterranean style spice blend and added feta to complete this light and simple meal. Next time I think I'll use a sun dried tomato feta for a bit of extra flavor, but overall this culinary experiment was a success! The tender, spiced squash is balanced by the feta and whole wheat pasta makes it a healthier dish. 


Ingredients:
  • 2T olive oil
  • 1cup butternut squash cubed
  • 1tsp minced garlic
  • 1 sprig of sage
  • 1tsp cumin
  • 1/4tsp cayenne pepper
  • salt and pepper
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 package whole wheat angel hair pasta, prepared per package instructions
  • 4 oz package feta crumbles

Directions:
  1. Add olive oil to a large pan over medium heat. Saute the squash and garlic for about 2 minutes.
  2. Mix in the spices and continue to saute for another 3-4 minutes to wake up the flavors. 
  3. Then add in the water and cook for about 8-10 more minutes until water has all cooked off and the squash is fork tender. 
  4. In a large serving bowl mix together the pasta, squash and feta. Then serve and enjoy! 

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