July 31, 2009

Chicken Sausage Sandwich

This is a delicious and easy sandwich. I actually bought all my ingredients at Costco - but any variety will do.

Chicken Sausage Sandwich
1 chicken sausage link
1 demi-bagette, sliced and toasted
mozzerella cheese
1 tsp dijion mustard

Collect Ingredients: good crusty bread - I used a demi-bagette, chicken sausage (mine was a cheese and sundried tomato variety), mozzarella (or any good melting cheese), lettuce, and tomato. Slice your bread in half.

Remove some of the bread inside, brush with oil (or if your in a hurry like me, spray with cooking spray) and place under broiler until golden brown. Add cheese, and place back under broiler. Meanwhile, cook sausage until cassing is crispy and center is warm.

Assemble. The sausage fit so neatly into the hollowed bread - was nice to not have it slip and slide around.

I am a purist and don't like too many sauces on my sandwiches. However, this was delicious with just a hint of your favorite dijion mustard.

Mmm... ooey gooey cheese.

PS - do you like this size picture or the bigger ones?

July 29, 2009

Summer Social

I have made it! I am finally considered a "Professional Blogger" (at least, that's what my sister tells me). I was invited to go to the Summer Social Retreat in Midway! I will let you know how it is!

July 27, 2009

Wish List

I don't usually wish for many clothes or jewelry - I mostly wish for kitchen gadgets. I either don't have them because I don't have the money or the space to hold them. But here are things I am wishing for:

My sister-in-law got these cookie cutters for her wedding. I currently own three heart cookie cutters - that's it. These cover every holiday, numbers, letter, and most other items you would want.

Yes, I really do want this tortilla warmer - we eat a lot of tortillas in our house. My husband lived among the hispanic people for two years... sometimes he thinks he is hispanic.

My egg slicer just broke and rusted away. This one is deluxe! You can do slices, dices... (a little infomercial-ish I know.)

I really want a large wooden butcher block on my counter. They can be really expensive. So I thought I would just get this cutie... and make part of my counter top a butcher block.

This food mill is beautiful. I really want to try it out and have the fluffiest mashed potatoes ever. (I love mashed potatoes!) Anyone have one they want me to borrow and test out before I fork over the dough?

Now, I don't really believe in kitchen gadgets that only do one thing... unless I do that one thing often. I wish I ate enough mangoes to make this one of the exceptions.

July 22, 2009

Brown Sugar Carrots

These carrots are great for a Sunday dinner side dish

Brown Sugar Carrots
Recipe from my friend Jenny
1 ½ lbs chopped, peeled carrots or baby carrots
1 cup chicken broth
4 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp brown sugar
½ cup toasted walnuts or pecans

In a large frying pan toast the walnuts or pecans. I had walnuts.
Once you smell the nuts, they are done. Take them out and chop.

In the same pan (I don’t like dishes) melt the butter.

Once melted, add the chicken broth and carrots.

Add brown sugar, because everything is better with brown sugar.

Simmer around 10 minutes or until the carrots are tender. I like the contrast of the crunchy nuts and carrots, so I cook them until they are a little soft. Put a lid on the pan to speed up the process.

If the carrots are done cooking, but there is still a bit of broth left, remove the carrots with my mom’s favorite kitchen tool.

Turn the heat up and let the broth and sugar reduce until nice and caramely. Poor over carrots, add nuts, stir.


July 20, 2009

Baked Beans

My Grandma was a fabulous cook. Everything coming out of her kitchen was the epitome of comfort food. This recipe is thanks to her.
I made this recipe for a party and did 1 ½ recipes. So the pictures and the recipe are not the same amounts.

Baked Beans
About 10 cups canned pork and beans
1 c ketchup
½ c brown sugar
3 Tbsp mustard
2 tsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp Worcestershire
½ lb chopped cooked bacon

Drain pork and beans and place in baking dish, meanwhile cook bacon until crispy.

Mix in ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, garlic, and Worcestershire.

Add bacon. Cut one onion in half and place in beans. Bake at 300 degrees for 2-3 hours.


July 17, 2009


I love coleslaw, but have never made it before. This recipe is delicious and very easy.


adapted from Tyler Florence

1 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Drizzle extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 lemon, juiced
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar or pinch
1 store-bought bag shredded slaw mix
1/4 head of red cabbage, shredded
(some bags include red cabbage - I like to have the color. Just reduce the amount of dressing)

Mix all ingredients except for cabbage in the bottom of a large bowl. Toss in cabbage.
I like to do this a couple hours before I am going to eat it. It should look a little dry, as you let it sit it will look more like the picture above.

July 14, 2009

Mustard Pork Tenderloin

I love the combination of pork and mustard. Here is a little recipe I made up last night.

Mustard Pork Tenderloin
2 lb Pork Tenderloin
3 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
½ tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Parsley
¼ tsp Thyme
Salt and Pepper

Pat dry pork tenderloin with a paper towel. Mix mustard, garlic, parley, thyme, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Rub on all sides of pork tenderloin until completely covered. Let marinate for at least 20 minutes. Preheat broiler and place pork under the broiler for about 10-12 minutes on both sides or until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 155 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes. Cut on a bias and serve.

About this much mustard...

Mix with dried herbs. I use dried because fresh burn so much easier - especially the garlic.

Give that tenderloin a good massage, he needs it. (I did double this recipe because we were having some friends over.)

Doesn't it look delicious? It was.

July 13, 2009

Dinner Rolls

Rolls are probably my favorite thing to make, there is something so therapeutic about kneading bread dough. Although the mixers make it easy to do, I still take it out and knead by hand because I love the feel.
Here is my recipe - tried and true by all my family members (we are all bread makers!)

Dinner Rolls
Adapted from Better Homes and Garden New Cook Book
About 4 cups all-purpose flour
1 pkg active dry yeast
1 cup milk
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter
1 tsp salt
2 eggs

Get a cute baking buddy... check!
In a large mixer, combine 2 cups flour and the yeast.

In a saucepan combine milk, sugar, butter and salt. Melt over medium heat, stirring frequently.

Heat until butter is almost melted. (Should be just warmer than body temperature, so stick your finger in, if you can't tell the temperature - just a titch warmer, feels warm - perfect, feels hot - let it cool down before adding it to the yeast... it could kill it)

Add to flour mixture. Beat until mixed.

Add eggs. Beat for a few minutes. Switch mixer attachment from beater to bread hook. Add flour ½ cup at a time until bread is smooth and does not stick to sides to the bowl. Knead for 5 minutes. If kneading by hand, mix flour in until unable to mix with wooden spoon. Turn out onto floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, adding flour as needed. Dough should feel moist but not sticky. This takes a little finesse to get the feeling right. (Should look like picture below, minus the grease.)

Grease bowl, place dough in bowl and turn so that both sides of dough are greased.
Cover with damp cloth and let rise until doubled, about 1 to 2 hours (depending on your yeast, temperature of the room, etc.).

This is what it looks like after it has raised

(This is from the cookbook - so if you want to make other shapes.)

Divide dough in half, roll out or shape into desired shapes.

This is the beautiful butterhorn shape - roll from big end to little and place on baking sheet with point side down.
This is the easy man's version.

Place on greased baking sheet, bake at 375 for 10 to 12 minutes.

While still hot, rub butter on cooked rolls. Eat and enjoy!

July 10, 2009

Pink Grapefruit Sorbet

The theme for our cooking club this month was ice cream! I have never made it before. I thought I would do a sorbet to balance the richness of the other decadent flavors.
I have to say, it was delicious.

adapted from Emeril Lagasse
2 cups freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
2 cups simple syrup (equal amounts sugar and water heated until sugar dissolves; cool)
2 teaspoons grapefruit zest
1/3 cup packed basil leaves
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

First make your simple syrup, at first it will look like this...

Then it will look like this. Set aside

Zest about half a grapefruit for the 2 tsp needed, juice away. It took me about 2 1/2 grapefruits to get the needed juice. Don't worry about seeds or pulp - your going to strain later. Add the simple syrup and bring to a boil.

I bought a basil plant just for this... and all the other yummy recipes involving basil. Pack in the basil to make 1/3 a cup.

Once the juice mixture has come to a boil, remove from heat and add the basil leaves. Let steep for 5 minutes. Add the lemon juice.

Strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve and set aside to cool. Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled. Then put in ice cream maker an use according to manufacturer's instructions.

Transfer to a freezer-proof container with a lid and freeze until firm, about 6 to 8 hours, or over night. This was delicious. Trust me - I know it might sound odd, but it is delicious. Very refreshing.

July 07, 2009

Sweet & Spicy Shrimp

I decided to make shrimp for dinner but didn't want the same old scampi. So, I looked in my fridge and pulled these out and was inspired.

Sweet & Spicy Shrimp

3 Tbsp soy sauce
1/4 c apricot preserves
1 tsp fresh grated ginger
1 T Chinese chili paste
splash (or squeeze...ha) lime

Mix Chinese chili paste, soy sauce, apricot preserves, fresh ginger, and lime juice (yes, I used the store bought - don't judge, I just got back from a trip). Mix these up. To help the mixing, heat the preserves up in the microwave for about 30 seconds.

Peel, devein, and rinse your shrimp. Please, do not use precooked shrimp.

Pat dry on a paper towel

Mix the shrimp in the marinade.

Now, test the shrimp to make sure you like the seasoning. I take one out of the marinade, and drop on the grill pan. Adjust the mixture as needed.

Fry up for a couple minutes on both sides until pink skin and opaque meat.