Saturday, November 26, 2011

Made Mom's Vegetable Bread For Thanksgiving

Growing up, this was my Thanksgiving request that my Mom make.  Butter, bacon, biscuits…now I know why it was a favorite for all of those years.  The recipe might need a name change though as it could be perceived as healthy in name only.  Grab your favorite bundt pan and get started - great for a family gathering!

2 sticks butter
3 cans butter milk biscuits
1 c. green bell pepper, chopped
1 c. onion, chopped
1/2 c. chives, chopped
1/2 lb. fried bacon, crumbled
1/2 c. parmesan cheese

Saute pepper, onion and chives in butter.  Quarter biscuits.

Cook the bacon in the oven at 400 degrees until crisp, approximately 20 minutes.

Pour pepper and onion mixture over biscuits and toss.  Add bacon and cheese.

Stir to fully coat biscuits. Pout into ungreased bundt pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Cool for about 5 minutes, invert onto a round cake plate and serve warm.

A note from Mom: Don't make ahead of time and refrigerate…It doesn't work as well as the butter hardens and the entire mixture sticks to the pan.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Made Roasted Salmon with Green Herbs

I saw this in a Barefoot Contessa cookbook this summer and am just now getting around to trying it.  Finding that my salmon meals are better the sooner I cook the meals from when I buy the fresh ingredients.  So all of this is fresh from Whole Foods and our garden, which always excites me!!

The below recipe serves 6 but tonight I was only cooking for 2…

1 (2-2.5 lb.) skinless salmon fillet
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 c. good olive oil
2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 c. minced scallions, white and green parts (4 scallions)
1/2 c. minced fresh dill
1/2 c. minced fresh parsley
1/4 c. dry white wine
Lemon wedges, for serving (if you want to be fancy)

I so loved chopping the parsley, dill, green onions and squeezing the lemons.  The scallions are out of our garden and originally came from my Grandparents garden in East Texas.  We transported one of the bulbs on our last trip and they are growing so nicely.  If anyone reading this wants to try this recipe in the next few days we have herbs to spare….give me a shout.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Place salmon fillet(s) in a glass, ceramic, or stainless-steel roasting dish and season it generously with salt and pepper.  Whisk together the olive oil and lemon juice and drizzle the mixture evenly over the salmon.  Let it stand at room temperature for 15 minutes.

 In a small bowl, stir together the scallions, dill and parsley.  I love the beautiful green color!

Scatter the herb mixture over the salmon fillet(s), turning it so that both sides are generously coated with the green herbs.  Pour the wine around the fish fillet.  Roast the salmon for 10-12 minutes, until almost cooked in the center at the thickest part.  The center will be firm with just a line of uncooked salmon in the very center.  Cover the dish tightly with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 10 minutes.  If using one fillet, cut the salmon crosswise into serving pieces and serve hot with lemon wedges.

Perfect for your next dinner party or an easy weeknight dinner for you and your spouse or a deserving roommate!!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Made Bridal Luncheon Recipes

As promised the recipes from Rebecca's Bridal Luncheon.

Autumn Salad
Better to have too much than not to have enough!  I doubled the vinaigrette and pecans and bought extra at least two of the produce listed.  We fed 22 at the shower and had leftovers if that tells you anything.    

Mixed greens
Red onion rings, thinly sliced
Avocados, chopped
Granny Smith Apples, thinly sliced
1, 16oz. container, crumbled goat or blue cheese (I used feta b/c it is the Bride's favorite)
Glazed Pecans
Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette

Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. olive oil
1/4 c. lime juice
1/4 c. rice vinegar
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 shallots, minced
2 tbsp. fresh cilantro, chopped
Put all the ingredients, except olive oil in blender.  Mix then pour oil in a thin stream through the top of the blender.  

Glazed Pecans
1 egg white
1 tbsp. water
1/2 tsp. salt
1 lb. pecan halves
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
I prepared the pecans the night before as to save time the morning of the shower.  In a large mixing bowl, beat egg white, water, and salt until frothy.  Once frothy, add pecans.  Stir in sugar and cinnamon and smell the goodness!!  Pour onto greased, foil-lined pan and bade at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.  Don't forget the Pam and foil for your baking sheet or you will be sorry…

Just before ready to serve mix all of the veggies, fruit, pecans and toss in the vinaigrette.  This is a beautiful and bold salad that everyone will love!

Hawaiian Sandwiches
This recipe was also doubled and we ended up with 36 sandwiches.  Sam's carries the 24-pack so you would be set with two packs of 24 if you are making for a larger group.  

1/2 lb. swiss cheese slices
1/2 lb. ham slices
1/2 lb. turkey slices
2 pkg. hawaiian rolls (12 pack)
Butter topping
Grease 9x13 pans for baking and preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  Slice through each roll, which will make it easy for assembly.  Alternate 1 slice of swiss, ham and turkey and fold over to fit into the roll.  Stick a toothpick in the middle to keep together.  Continue this process until all meat and cheese is used.  Place all rolls in greased pans.   

Poppy Seed Topping
1 stick butter
1 tbsp. poppy seeds
4 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. dry onion flakes
1 tbsp. honey mustard   
After rolls are assembled and in the baking dishes, brush the poppyseed topping over the top of each roll and along the sides of the pan, completely covering each roll.  

Bake at 400 degrees for 12-15 minutes until golden.  Serve warm.

Tomato Caprese Kabobs
Cherry tomatoes
Marinated mozzarella balls
Fresh basil leaves
Mini skewers

On each skewer, alternate cherry tomato, mozzarella ball and fresh basil.  It is that simple!!  

Roasted Red Pepper Cheese Dip
2 large red bell peppers
2 large, unpeeled garlic cloves
1, 8oz. block fat-free cream cheese
2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 - 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper

Preheat broiler.  Cut bell peppers in half, lengthwise.  Place peppers, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten peppers with hand.  Add garlic to baking sheet and broil 4 minutes.  Turn garlic over and broil 4 more minutes or until blackened.  Remove garlic from baking sheet; set aside.  Broil peppers an additional 2 minutes or until blackened.  Place peppers in a zip-lock plastic bag and seal; let stand 15 minutes.  Peel peppers and garlic; discard skins.
Place roasted peppers and garlic in food processor; process until smooth, scraping sides of bowl for the excess.  Add cream cheese; process until smooth.  Spoon mixture into a bowl and stir in vinegar, slat and crusted red pepper.  Serve immediately with raw vegetables or chill. 

9 c. rice chex
1 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 c. peanut butter
1/4 c. butter or margarine
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. powdered sugar

In a large bowl, measure cereal and set aside.  In a 1-quart microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter uncovered on high for 1 minutes.  Microwave 30-45 seconds longer or until mixture can be stirred smooth.  Stir in vanilla.  Pour mixture over cereal, stirring until evenly coated.  Pour into re-sealable, easily accessible container.   

Stash Chai Tea
We served hot, Stash chai spice tea and it was wonderful!  

Can't wait for the next party to host and recipes to make!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Made A Bridal Luncheon for Rebecca

This past weekend a group of my friends from college gathered to shower, with love and "lunching",  our sweet, Rebecca, who will be getting married just after the New Year.  It was a special day to love on Rebecca, her family and other friends who gathered.  Before we get to the food, take a peak at our setting on this beautiful fall day in Dallas.  These girls know how to pitch in and throw a shower!

Chocolate brown, burlap tablecloths covered three, 60-inch round tables outside on the patio.  Each of the three tables was uniquely set with three different place-settings, a fall-colored floral centerpiece and cookie favor.

The stunning arrangements were created by our Elizabeth who always puts so much time into flowers for our showers.  A few of us have taken on specific jobs throughout the years and I am happy to participate in the food.  So here we go…

Rebecca's Bridal Shower Luncheon Menu
Autumn Salad
Hawaiian Sandwiches
Tomato Caprese Kabobs
Sliced Vegetables with Roasted Red Pepper Cheese Dip
Fresh Strawberries
Stein's Petit Fours
Puppy Chow
Cucumber Water & Hot Chai Tea

After a little prep work on Sunday we all pitched in to put the final touches on our menu items.  B snapped a few shots of us in the kitchen.
 Carroll and I basting the sandwiches with the poppyseed topping

 Alicia and Elizabeth assembling the kabobs.

Pastries were not to be risked by cooking on our own…love the classy monogram!

What was left of the Hawaiian Sandwiches….just enough to give the family-in-law a taste test!!

Hostesses with The Bride, Rebecca: Me, Alicia, Rebecca, Emily, Elizabeth, Carroll

What I would have done different…
Made the day longer to spend with our sweet friend!!

Luncheon recipes to come in the next post...