Archive for the ‘ Recipes ’ Category

It’s Been a While…Let’s Hop, Skip, and Go Naked

So, I have been away much too long. Excuses could be thrown, as I have a few legitimate ones. For instance, I am actually changing my career path, and taking on a new job soon. It should be fun, and will take me to some new places to try out food, and review here. For now, we won’t dwell on my absence, and we’ll talk a little about what this is all about: food.

More specifically with New Years Eve coming tomorrow, what is everyone going to eat? Anyone out there throwing some wild and crazy parties? Personally, it’s pretty low key this year, with only a few friends coming over for some shenanigans. Last year was a bit crazier, and I cooked a boat load. This year is a tad easier…

So, for pre-dinner fooodage, I’m just throwing together a simple cheese and veggie platter with crackers. Nice, easy, and everyone usually is happy with it. For dinner, I think we’re doing the cop out this year, and ordering Chinese takeout. I’ve always heard that this is a New Years staple, but have never done it myself until now.

And to the important part: the drinks! This year, I will once again be making Hop, Skip, and Go Naked Punch. The recipe is as follows, so enjoy!

Hop, Skip, and Go Naked Punch

  • 6 oz. Limeade Concentrate
  • 6 oz. Lemonade Concentrate
  • 2 liters of lemon-lime soda
  • 8 oz. Bacardi 151
  • 8 oz. Peach Schnapps

Note: The measurements are pretty flexible, and mine usually gets made with extra booziness 🙂

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Attempted: Two Ingredient Brownies

I know, I say brownies, and then I show a  picture of truffles. I’m a horribly confusing person I know. Still, there is a connection here! This Halloween weekend, like most 20-something adults, I decided to throw a small, spooky shindig. As such, food was in order, so I decided to get creative and adapt this interesting brownie recipe into something to serve to my friends…

So, this is actually a  recipe post for my version of 3G brownies. With my odd fascination with pumpkin, and creative cooking, the idea of simply mixing a chocolate cake mix and a can of pumpkin puree was pretty enticing, especially with everything else I needed to do to get ready for a party. Oh yeah, here is the recipe form if you want to get professional:

Two Ingredient Brownies:

  • 1 box dark chocolate cake mix
  • 1 can pumpkin puree

Directions:

  1. Mix cake mix and puree
  2. Put in pan
  3. Bake according to box directions

Yeah…it really is just that easy… I did try and mix this up a little. In an attempt to be classy, I actually baked these in a muffin tin, and put Lindt White chocolate truffles in the center in my attempt to create “Monster Eyes”. Yeah, it failed. The truffles browned in the heat of the oven, and caved in on themselves creating something that didn’t really…look..like..anything…Still, the flavor combination was spot on.

The pumpkin and dark chocolate really make to form a velvety cake texture. Yes, that means these really weren’t brownies, more like very silky cupcakes. Still, they were enjoyed by all, and the pairing of the white chocolate added the sweetness that was needed to make these truly a dessert item. My goal is to try them again with Ghirardelli white chocolate chips next time to more evenly spread the sweetness, and not waste Lindt truffles.

The best part of these though has nothing to do with their simplicity or their flavor. I got my friend who loathes pumpkin (or at least thinks he does) to eat one, and say that they were awesome before telling him halfway through a mouthful that 50% of what he had just crammed into his mouth was pumpkin. He wasn’t thrilled, but the rest of us sure got a good laugh. Just goes to show you that it’s always good to try new things, and expand your horizons…or ask what something is made of before eating it.

Oh, last note on the nutrition of these things. It’s just a guess, but I think we’re talking somewhere in the vicinity of 200 calories a muffin without the truffles in them. No point value as of now as I wasn’t aiming for health food on Halloween.

A Better Bacon Tortellini Salad

Oh father’s day. Another weekend in the summer months prime for cookouts, and family get-togethers. This past weekend saw me at a cookout/pool party thrown by my mother, and her boyfriend. As such, I was requested to bring a salad. With those instructions, I was off searching the internet for a good candidate.

After some digging, and crawling around on allrecipes.com, I settled on a Tortellini and Broccoli Salad.

Not one to settle for the standard, I took their recipe, and made it my own. Here’s the ingredients I used, and then followed their directions for putting the salad together.

Ingredients

  • 2 16oz. bags frozen tortellini
  • 2 crowns fresh broccoli
  • 1 bunch green onion
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 1 lb. maple bacon
  • 1 large bottle of Hidden Valley Bacon Ranch
  • salt and pepper to taste

Their recipe is almost identical accept for some ingredient amounts, and the use of coleslaw dressing instead of Ranch. I figured that you can never have enough bacon, and I really wanted my salad to pack a wallop. Well, the salad was a hit, and I was told that I’d have to make it again. Good enough for me I suppose. Try out the recipe at allrecipes.com, or give my variation a shack for a tasty summer barbecue salad.

Photo courtesy of allrecipes.com.

Unhealthy and Delicious: My Green Bean Casserole

My family loves to get together on holidays. It’s great to see everyone, visit, catch up, and oh yeah…EAT! My family are big into the massive dinner get-togethers.  This Easter, was no different, except for the sheer amount of people that showed up (over 25 last I checked).

Now my grandmother, bless her soul, declared that she was not going to cook for a crowd that big, and I can’t blame her. Instead, we all got our marching orders, and were told to bring something. My command: make a tasty Green Bean Casserole. Given the lack of leftovers of the stuff, I’d say I did. Here’s my recipe for something delicious, and most definitely NOT Weight Watchers friendly.

Ingredients:

  • 1 reg. can of French’s French Fried Onions (6oz. I think)
  • 1 8 oz. package of Oscar Meyer Bacon (or whatever you see fit)
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion
  • 2 cans (10 3/4 oz. each) Campbells Cream of Mushroom Soup
  • 1 cup Milk
  • a dash of Soy Sauce (2 tsp. for you specific types)
  • a liberal dash of course ground black pepper (oh just eyeball it already)
  • around 3 lbs of fresh green beans
  • oh yeah, and 8 oz. grated sharp cheddar cheese 🙂

Ok, now to put it all together:

  1. Start off by cooking your bacon. Leave it whole for the cooking process, and then once done and cool, chop it up into reasonable chunks. Set to the side, but keep some of that good bacon grease in your pan.
  2. Now finely chop up your onion, and cook in the remaining bacon grease. This will help infuse your onions with tasty bacon-ish powers. Set off to the side with your bacon. Actually, put it all together and let them share flavors and juices…they’re all ending in the same spot.
  3. In a 9×13 casserole dish, combine your Cream of Mushroom, Milk, Soy, and pepper. Stir it all together.
  4. Now add in your bacon, onions, 1/2 of the can of fried onions, and about 3/4 of the grated cheddar, and continue to mix all of it together. It should look reasonably like something nasty at this point, but no worries.
  5. Now, cut the ends off of, cut into 1″ pieces, and wash your green beans. Once they are all chopped and in proper form, blanch the lot of them in a large sauce pan. In simpler terms, add a bit of water and salt, and cook them for a bit, but make sure they are still firm. Once done, strain and rinse the beans in cold water, and let them cool off.
  6. Take a moment to get your oven preheating to 350 degrees.
  7. Now,  add your green beans into the casserole dish with the other ingredients, and turn the whole mess together, making sure to get a reasonable even consistency over the entire thing.
  8. Now, top the mess with the remaining 1/4 of cheddar.
  9. Your oven should hopefully now be preheated. Put the casserole in , and let it cook for about 25 to 30 minutes.
  10. Once your time is up, YOU’RE NOT DONE YET! Pull out the casserole and top with the remaining fried onions, and throw the dish (not literally folks) back into the oven throwing it over to broil for 5 minutes, or until the top is golden and crispy. Let sit for a couple minutes before serving.
  11. And bob is your uncle, you have a delicious and unique green bean casserole. Now sit back, and witness relatives fight over every bit of it.

There you have it! It’s easy, delicious, and sure to be a hit.