Thursday, July 29, 2010

Pineapple Burger Sliders

Have you ever had a pineapple burger? A big thick burger filled with a ring of pineapple and a special sauce.
This is a delicious memory from my childhood. My mom made them and they are so easy… however, when I tried to recreate this memory my burgers turned out dry and flavorless (excluding the pineapple and sauce in the middle). So I decided to change it up a bit. I made these first as meatballs and then when I came across Sweet Hawaiian rolls and a slider maker thingy… it's like it was meant to be! Sweet, Simple and Delicious!!!
1 lb ground beef (I use 85/15)
I small can crushed pineapple, drained
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup mustard
Salt and Pepper
Sweet Hawaiian Rolls

Mix molasses, ketchup and mustard to create a sauce. Pour half of sauce into a large bowl, then add pineapple, ground beef, salt and pepper and combine ingredients together but do not over mix. Shape small burgers and cook in a skillet until completely cooked through basting with sauce towards the end.
Slice each roll in half, fill with a mini burger, top with additional sauce and Voila!! A super addictive, satisfyingly sweet and savory slider! Enjoy one or two or three… I won't tell ;-)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Another chocolate chip cookie recipe… it reminds me of a line in the movie Aladdin "another suitor for the princess". The mundane process of mixing, scooping and baking… the time consuming work that results in a good cookie, but not the perfect cookie.
But… I'm gonna keep trying them until I get it right. I have this idea in my head of what the perfect cookie should be. The taste, texture, color, etc… and this one is closer than any other I've tried. It's a really good cookie; a chewy cookie which is the only thing that keeps it from being perfect.

The taste - Delicious! The appearance - very appetizing!! The Texture… well, chewy... so if you like that kind of thing!!

3/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
12 oz chocolate chips
parchment paper

Preheat oven to 350. Beat butter and sugars at medium speed in a stand mixer until creamy. Add eggs and vanilla, beating until creamy.
Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a small mixing bowl; gradually add to butter mixture, beating just until blended. Beat in chocolate chips just until combined. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto parchment paper lined baking sheets.
Bake at 350 for 10 to 14 minutes. Remove to wire racks and cool completely.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Tex-Mex Squash Casserole

The only squash casserole I ever knew existed consisted of sauteed onions and squash, saltine crackers and sliced american cheese. I mean, don't get me wrong... I love the stuff, but when I came across this recipe I just had to try it!!

Please pardon the terrible picture. It does nothing more than show you how amazingly cheesy this casserole is. To be honest, grabbing the camera was an afterthought.

This casserole was wonderfully full of flavor and did I mention cheesy?? I love cheese. The real stuff that you painstakingly shred yourself, not the weird bagged stuff. I hope you try it and enjoy it as much as we did!

note: it was spicy (which was perfect for us)

Tex-Mex squash casserole

2 yellow squash and 2 zucchini, cut into coins (4 cups)
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, diced
2 tablespoons of butter
1 can of Ro-Tel
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon of cumin
1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 cup of chicken or vegetable broth
2 tablespoons of flour
1/2 cup of half and half
1/2 cup of sour cream
1/2 cup of cilantro, chopped
2 cups total of grated pepper jack and cheddar
2 cups crushed tortilla chips
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Heat the butter in a large skillet on medium heat. When melted, add the squash, onion and jalapeno, and sauté until onions are translucent and the squash is soft, about ten minutes.

Add the garlic, cumin, chili powder, cayenne, salt, pepper and cook for a minute. Then stir in the flour and cook until a light-brown paste forms, about a minute.

Now add the broth and tomatoes and stir until the mixture thickens, which should happen in a couple of minutes. Add the half and half, sour cream and cilantro and turn off the heat.

In a greased casserole dish, layer the bottom with the crushed tortilla chips. Pour on top of the chips the creamy squash mixture and then cover the whole dish with the grated cheese.
Cook uncovered for thirty minutes.
Recipe found here.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Fried Rice

This recipe does not replace the rice from our favorite restaurant, but it's good. Really good... and my kids love it so it's a keeper! I found it on Our Best Bites, and changed it just a little to fit our taste.

6 cups cold cooked rice
4 tbsp butter
1/4 cup minced red onion
2 tbsp chopped green onion
1/4 tbsp minced garlic
1/4 cup chopped carrot
4 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp dried onion
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tsp garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp celery salt
1 1/2 tps sugar

First mix the seasonings and put in an airtight container (note: it makes way more than you need... the first time I made this I used WAY TO MUCH). Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat and saute onions and carrots until tender, then add garlic and saute for another 30 seconds. Next add rice and soy sauce and then season to taste.

Hmmm, what should I try to make next??? Maybe Lo Main?

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Broccoli and Beef

I have been devastated since our favorite Chinese food restaurant closed a couple of years ago. We've searched the area looking for something, anything that measures up... but no luck thus far :( and to add insult to injury... I cannot recreate any of our favorite dishes. I mean not even close! I can cook Mexican exceptionally well and Italian practically flawlessly (well, it's pretty good) but I have yet to find any good Chinese recipes... until now.

This recipe was simple and delicious! (tomorrow I'll share the fried rice recipe pictured)

1 1/4 lb Steak (I used a flat iron steak)
1 tsp ginger
2 tsp sugar
6 tbsp soy sauce
4 tsp cornstarch
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 bag frozen broccoli

Slice steak, against the grain, in to thin slices. Mix ginger, sugar, soy sauce and cornstarch in a large bowl. Add the sliced steak, making sure its all coated and let stand for 10 minutes. Heat oil in a large skillet and pour marinated meat in the pan. Once meat is cooked, add broccoli and cook until heated through.


Monday, July 5, 2010

Ruben Sandwich

Here is a super quick recipe for a delicious sandwich.

Rye Bread (Pictured is Russian Rye, but any will work)
Turkey Pastrami
Swiss Cheese

Heat Sauerkraut in a pan to warm and dry the liquid so that your sandwich is not soggy. Next, assemble the sandwiches. Take two slices of bread, two slices of swiss cheese and two to three slices of pastrami, depending on the thickness. Spread mayonase on one slice of bread and mustard on the other, then cover one slice with a piece of cheese followed by pastrami, sauerkraut, another slice of cheese and the topped with the final slice of bread. Butter the outside of the sandwich and heat in a pan until bread is toasted and cheese is melted.