Saturday, September 19, 2009

Steak Chili with fajita seasoning

You can make this in the crock pot or on the stove and it is so tasty! I'll add at least one more can of beans next time, but there will definitely be a next time!

For the Fajita Seasoning:
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

For the Chili:
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 lbs flat iron steaks, trimmed, cubed, and seasoned with salt and pepper
1/4 cup tequila or 1 water
6 cups diced tomatoes, or 2 cans diced tomatoes (28 oz. each)
1 white onion, diced (2 cups)
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 1/2 cups beef broth
2 tablespoons flour
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed (I will use 2-3 cans next time)
2 tablespoons lime juice

Stir together the ingredients for the fajita seasoning and set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a soup pot or dutch oven over medium high heat. Brown half of the meat in the oil and transfer to a 4 to 6 quart slow cooker. Brown the remaining meat in the remaining oil and transfer to the slow cooker. Deglaze pot with tequila or water, scraping up the flavor bits stuck to the pan and add to the slow cooker.

Add tomatoes, bell peppers, diced onion, minced garlic, and the fajita seasoning to the slow cooker. Stir in beef stock and flour. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours.

Stir in beans and lime juice just before serving. Garnish with sour cream, cilantro, avocado, and jalapenos.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Red Beans and Rice

After looking at several recipes for red beans and rice, this is the combination of ingredients I came up with. We really enjoyed it!

1 lb. sausage, sliced (next time I'll try something a little more spicy)
1 lb. dried red beans, soaked in water overnight and drained
2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
1-2 green peppers, coarsely chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
4 bay leaves
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/2. tsp. thyme

Place all ingredients in a slow cooker. Fill with enough water to cover the ingredients. Cook on low 8-10 hours. Serve over rice or corn bread.

My FAVORITE Chocolate-Chip Cookies

This is all that was left from a batch I made yesterday. The recipe is a slight modification from the one on the back of the Nestle Toll House bag. They are always ooey-gooey-chewy-DELICIOUS!

3 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 cups chocolate chips
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Combine flour, baking soda and salt in a small bowl. Beat butter, sugars, and vanilla in a large mixer until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheet.

Important: Bake at 375 for 9 minutes (maybe 10), just until they are barely golden. Cool on baking sheet at least 3 minutes before removing them.

Apple Crisp

Do you have one of these? I call it an apple-peeler-corer-slicer (because that's exactly what it does!). It's absolutely worth every inch of space it takes up in my cabinet and makes baking this delicious apple crisp a cinch!

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups rolled oats
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 1/2 cups butter
2 quarts peeled, cored and sliced apples

In a large bowl, combine the flour, oatmeal, cinnamon, nutmeg and brown sugar. Cut butter into mixture until crumbly.

Take half of the mixture and pat it into the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish.
Cover crumb mixture with apple slices, then sprinkle apple slices with remaining crumb mixture.

Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 45 to 50 minutes or until apples are tender.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

No-Bake Cookies

I hesitated when posting this picture. How do you make no-bake cookies not look like, well . . . yeah.

I found it! I have it! The perfect no-bake cookie recipe. I know what you're thinking . . . "They're NO BAKES, Angela. Not that difficult." But I never seem to get them right. Mind you, I don't like chewy no-bake cookies. I like mine a little dry and crumbly and this recipe from my friend's blog (who apparently has had her own frustrations with no-bakes!) is perfect!

2 cups white sugar
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup margarine
1/2 cup milk
1 pinch salt
3 cups quick cooking oats
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a saucepan bring sugar, cocoa, margarine, milk, and salt to a rapid boil for 1 minute. THIS IS THE KEY STEP: You must wait until the mixture comes to a good boil (not just a couple of bubbles), then boil for one minute.

Add quick cooking oats, peanut butter, and vanilla; mix well.

Working quickly, drop by teaspoonfuls onto waxed paper, and let cool.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Morning Glory Muffins

My family loves these!

1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup bran
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups shredded carrots
1/2 cup peeled, diced apple
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped nuts
1/2 cup flaked coconut
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla

In a large bowl, mix flour, bran, baking powder and salt together. Add carrots, apple, raisins, nuts, coconut, and cinnamon and mix well. Set aside.

Beat together the sugars, butter, eggs and vanilla. Add this to the rest of the ingredients and mix together.

Spoon into greased muffin tins (or baking cups). Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes. Makes 12 muffins.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

Needing something to satisfy a sweet tooth after dinner tonight, I found this recipe to make in honor of my chocolate-loving friend's daughter being born tomorrow!

1 1/4 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp cocoa

Combine separately and stir into dry mixture:
2 Tbsp butter, melted
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla

Pour into greased 9x9 pan.
Mix together and spread over cake:
2 Tbsp cocoa
1/2 cup EACH white and brown sugars

Pour over cake:
1 1/4 cups boiling water.

Bake at 350 for 1 hour (I pulled it out at 55 minutes and it had already cooked too long. Next time I'll check at 45 minutes first). It comes out of the pan with the cake on top and pudding on bottom.

Chicken Tagine

This has such an unexpected combination of flavors, but Ryan and I love it!

Makes 4 servings

2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, each cut into three pieces (I cut the pieces smaller)
1/4 cup all-purpose
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp red pepper
1/4 tsp turmeric
2 tsp olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 tsp grated fresh ginger (I use powder)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup green olives (we use more!)
2 tsp grated lemon zest (I used lemon juice)
3- inch cinnamon stick

Marinate the chicken in the lemon juice for at least 30 minutes. Remove chicken and discard marinade. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels.

In a shallow bowl, combine the flour, salt, black and red peppers, and turmeric. Dredge the chicken through the flour mixture, lightly coating both sides, and set aside.

In a large, deep nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for 3 minutes per side, or until lightly browned. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.

Add the onion, ginger and garlic to pan. Saute 5 minutes, or until tender. Return the chicken to pan. Add the broth, olives, lemon zest and cinnamon stick. Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce heat and simmer 1 hour, or until chicken is tender. (I've never gone past 45 minutes). Discard cinnamon sticks and serve with rice.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Spiced Plum Bread

1 egg
1/2 cup honey
2/3 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup peeled and chopped plums
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, blend the egg, honey, sugar, and vanilla. Mix in the flour, baking soda, cloves, and cinnamon. Fold in the plums and walnuts.

Transfer the batter to the prepared loaf pan, and bake 50 to 60 minutes in the preheated oven, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
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