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Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Beef Stew

As Fall is here, with cooler temperatures, I am inspired to make soup, often.  I realized that I had not made Beef Stew for many years, so I decided it was time.  I checked around the interwebs and found a few recipes, then did my own version.   It was very tasty and comforting.  I served it over rice.





Ingredients

2 pounds cubed beef stew meat
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 32 oz Beef Broth (I recommend Pacific Brand)
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tbl Worcestershire
2 tbl A1 steak sauce
2 tbl beef base
3 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 carrots, cut into 1 inch pieces
4 stalks celery, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 large onion, chopped
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons cold water

Directions

In a large pot or dutch oven, cook beef in oil over medium heat until brown. Dissolve bouillon/beef base in 1 cup of water and pour into pot. Stir in rosemary, parsley, and pepper. Add beef broth, A1 and Worcestershire.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer 1 hour.

Stir potatoes, carrots, celery, and onion into the pot. Dissolve cornstarch in 2 teaspoons cold water and stir into stew. Cover and simmer 1 hour more.

Serve alone or with rice.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Jalapeno Popper Mini Biscuits



My husband saw this recipe on Facebook and decided it was right up our alley, we love spicy food and this sounded interesting.  It is very labor intensive, but so worth it for the end result, they were delicious.

Ingredients

5 jalapeno peppers (try to find the largest ones you can)
1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 large egg
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup shredded mozzarella (about 5 ounces)
Kosher salt
One 16.3-ounce tube store-bought biscuit dough

Directions

Position an oven rack 4 to 5 inches from the heating element, and preheat the broiler. Line a baking sheet with foil.

Cut the stem end off the jalapenos, cut each in half lengthwise and remove and discard the seeds (wear food-grade gloves if your skin is sensitive).

Arrange the jalapenos skin-side up on the prepared baking sheet, and brush with the oil. Broil until the peppers are blackened and puffy, 3 to 4 minutes. When cool enough to handle, rub off the skins (running under cold water helps).

Cut 2 of the halves into large dice so you have 32 pieces (1 for the top of each biscuit); set aside.

Finely chop the rest of the peppers, and transfer to a medium bowl.

Switch the oven from broil to bake, and preheat to 400 degrees F. Remove the foil from the baking sheet, and line it with parchment.

Beat the egg well in a small bowl.

Add the cream cheese, mozzarella and half the egg to the bowl with the chopped peppers, add 1/4 teaspoon salt and mix to combine.

Separate the biscuit rounds, and cut each into quarters. Make a deep indentation in the center of each quarter, and fill with a heaping teaspoon of the pepper-cheese mixture (it will mound above the biscuit a fair amount).

Brush any exposed biscuit with the remaining beaten egg. Bake until the biscuits are puffed and golden around the top, 10 to 12 minutes. Garnish each with a piece of reserved Jalepeno.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Souffle Pancakes


We were watching an episode of Diners, Drive In's and Dives and Chef made these pancakes. Since we are breakfast freaks we knew we had to give them a try.  The recipe on the The Food Network was for a huge amount of batter and no specific measurements were given,  so we used The Googler and found this recipe.  We doubled it and it was enough for 4 in a 12 inch pan.

It was delicious, and will be on our regular breakfast rotation for the foreseeable future!

Ingredients:

4 eggs yolks
1 cup half & half
2/3 cup flour
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
6 egg whites
pinch of cream of tartar
Chopped fresh fruit

Instructions:

Preheat the broiler in your oven. Alternately, preheat your oven to 400°F

Beat the egg yolks and half and half in a large bowl until well mixed. Slowly whisk in the flour, stirring just until combined, then whisk in the butter, sugar, salt, and vanilla. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric beater until they form soft peaks. Gently fold the whites into the batter, folding just until the whites disappear. You don’t want to flatten your egg whites, lest you compromise the fluffiness of your lovely souffle.

Lightly grease a 12-inch nonstick ovenproof pan and set it over medium-high heat for one minute.

Pour the batter into the hot pan and reduce heat to medium. Cook the pancake for 5 minutes, until the batter begins to firm up a bit. Drop chunks of chopped fruit onto the surface of the pancake.

Place the pan 5 inches below the hot broiler, or if you don’t have a broiler, slide the pan into the preheated oven. Bake for 2-3 minutes, or until the pancake is puffed up and center is set but still soft.

Watch carefully to make sure the top doesn't burn! These things tend to head south pretty quickly, so don’t walk away from your oven while the souffle pancake is baking.

Slide the pancake onto a plate using a spatula. Dust with powdered sugar and more fruit, if you like. Eat immediately.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Sunny Anderson's Mama's Scalloped Potatoes



I am a pretty avid watcher of The Kitchen and the other day I was watching an episode where Sunny Anderson prepared her Mama's potatoes.  The recipe looked unique and tasty so I decided to add it to my Christmas Day meal.

The addition of Sage and Garlic was a fantastic taste bomb and I will be keeping this in my rotation.

Ingredients

1 tablespoon butter
2 cups heavy cream
15 fresh sage leaves
2 cloves garlic, smashed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound russet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced on a Mandolin or use a sharp knife
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 cup grated manchego cheese (I used Parmesan Romano)

 Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Coat the bottom and sides of an 8-by-8-inch baking dish with the butter; set aside.

In a saucepot on medium heat, add the heavy cream, sage, garlic and a pinch of salt. Bring to a low simmer and cook until the cream becomes fragrant with the scent of sage, about 10 minutes.

Layer the potatoes in the prepared dish. Add each slice by overlapping the previous slice by a bit and continue this pattern in a row or create a spiral. Once the first layer is done, sprinkle with a pinch of salt and cayenne pepper. Repeat the next layers by doing the same.

Once the layers are complete, strain out the sage leaves and garlic from the heavy cream and pour the cream over the dish. Allow the cream to settle into the dish, picking it up a little bit off the counter, then dropping it to tap the air out.

Then, sprinkle with the cheese. Cover the dish with aluminum foil.

Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Bake the potatoes for 45 minutes; remove the cover and bake until the cheese is golden, about 15 more minutes.






Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Butter poached Lobster Tails via a Sous Vide

We are Chef's in this house and I bought my husband a Sous Vide for Christmas.  We had been talking about it for awhile now.  The first thing we decided to make was Lobster.  The manufacturer Anova makes a precision cooker for the home cook.  It is pretty neat.  We found a recipe on the Manufacturers website and ran with it.

The nice thing about this unit is you can use any pan or vessel you happen to have on hand.  No special tools involved.  We used my soup pot.

Ingredients:

6 small Lobster Tails
4 tablespoons of butter
pinch of salt

The recipe advised putting the tails in boiling water for 45 seconds and then plunging into ice water to help remove the shell.  I have never tried to remove the shell from a fresh lobster before so I don't know if this step helped or not.  But we did it.

Get your Sous Vide preheating to 138 degree F.

Remove the shells leaving as much meat as possible.

We have a Food Saver so my husband made a bag, inserted the tails, butter and a bit of salt.  He sucked the air out of the bag. (we made sure the lobsters were flat and not right next to each other in the pouch)

Place the sealed sack into the water and set timer for 15 minutes.  Remove the pouch after 15 minutes and serve.  We poured into a bowl with the melted salty butter from bag and ate them immediately




Place the sealed sack into the water and set timer for 15 minutes.  Remove the pouch after 15 minutes and serve.  We poured into a bowl with the melted salty butter from bag and ate them immediately.





Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Savory Crepes with Sausage and Boursin Cheese


I am not quite sure where we came up with this recipe, a magazine or a food show, but it is and continues to be one of my favorite breakfast crepes.  It is savory with a little sweet from the apple compote.  The combination of the sausage and Boursin Cheese is delicious.

Ingredients:

Crepes - recipe below
Sausages (I get the larger size ones from New Seasons) cooked
1 package Boursin Cheese
2 Apples, peeled, seeds removed and cut into chunks
cinnamon to taste
1/2 cup sugar

Crepe Batter
1/2 Cup Flour
2 Tbs Sugar
1 Egg
1 Cup Milk
1 Tbs butter (melted)
1/4 tsp salt
This Recipe makes about 3-4 of the 10" pancakes or two servings

Use a "10-12" round non-stick skillet or frying pan.

First lightly beat the egg in a medium sized bowl, then add sugar, milk, salt and flour, mix well, melt the butter in the frying pan (or skillet) then while stirring the mixture add melted butter to it, continue mixing until there are no lumps, don't forget to scrape the sides of the bowl.

Once the batter is well mixed, then over medium heat pour just enough batter in the pan to cover the bottom of the pan, cook until the top of it is "dry" then flip the pancake. This takes a fair amount of finesse, as the pancake is large and not very 'tough'.

Get the spatula underneath the pancake and make sure that all around the pancake is loose first, then quickly flip it. After the flip, shake the pan a bit to get the pancake flat

Cook each one for about 30 seconds only after the flip. Slide the finished pancake out onto a dinner plate.

Combine the apples, sugar and cinnamon in a pan and cook till tender

Crepe assembly:

On each crepe include a smear of Boursin Cheese and a sausage, roll up and serve with the apple Chutney on top.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Chipotle Macaroni and Cheese


I have recently acquired a taste for Chipotle Pepper in Adobo Sauce and I am putting them in everything, it adds a smokey and slightly spicy taste to all kinds of food.

My Husband was cooking a Prime Ribeye for dinner and it was a nice sunny end of summer evening, so I decided to make some decadent Macaroni and Cheese to go with it, adding the Adobo Sauce really made the dish, I highly recommend this recipe!  Next time I am going to add more heat with some diced Jalapeno's and perhaps green onions.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups elbow macaroni
3 tablespoons butter or margarine (we used grass fed butter)
3 tablespoons all purpose flour (organic)
2 cups milk (not skim)  (I was out of milk so I used half and half cut with water)
1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper
2 cups of shredded cheese (I had leftover shredded cheddar and mozzarella cheese)
2 tablespoons of Adobo Sauce

Instructions

Bring a pot of water to a boil; add a generous sprinkling of salt the pasta. When the pasta is almost done but still firm, drain it, rinse with cold water to stop the cooking and set aside. (I cooked one minute under the package instructions)

While the pasta cooks, melt the butter in a skillet or pot large enough to hold the pasta when it's done.

Add the flour and stir over medium heat until the mixture is lightly browned; 1-2 minutes.

Add the milk and the adobo and whisk to remove any lumps and add the salt and pepper.

Cook over medium-high heat until the sauce thickens and starts to bubble. About 6 minutes.

Stir in the cheese and whisk until smooth and melted. Turn off the heat.

Stir the pasta into the sauce and bake in a greased 2 quart dish (or an 8x8 pan works pretty well)

Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 40-45 minutes until browned and bubbly.


Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Cheesy Zuchinni Patties



I had been meaning to make these all summer and finally had a chance.  They are super easy and very tasty.  We tweaked the recipe and I must say these were exceptionally good.  I served with Sour Cream and Apple Sauce.  I decided to serve them as a breakfast item, which turned out very well!


It is really important to drain your Zucchini after shredding it, and dry on paper towels



Ingredients:

2 cups grated zucchini
3 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 package of traditional instant mashed potatoes (3.5 ounce)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella/cheddar cheese
onion powder, garlic powder, garlic salt, chives, pepper, cayenne
salt to taste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Directions:

In a medium bowl, combine the (drained and dried zucchini), eggs, onion, flour, Parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese, spices and salt.

Stir well enough to distribute ingredients evenly.

Heat a small amount of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Drop zucchini mixture by heaping tablespoonfuls, and cook for a few minutes on each side until golden.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Chocolate Revel Bars


I was looking at my Facebook Feed and saw a photo flash by which reminded me of something my Aunt Florence used to make me when I spent time with her while my Mom was in the Hospital.  I looked at it and indeed it was the same recipe, I was thrilled and excited!

I talked my Husband into making them for me and the end result brought tears to my eyes, they tasted exactly the same as I remembered!  They are not pretty, but they are so good!

Ingredients:

3 cups quick-cooking oatmeal
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter or 1 cup margarine (we used Coconut Oil)
2 cups brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1 (14 ounce) cans sweetened condensed milk
2 tablespoons butter or 2 tablespoons margarine
1/2 cup walnut pieces (we used Pecans)
2 teaspoons vanilla

Directions

Preheat oven 350°.

Pan required is ungreased 15x10-inch jelly- roll pan.

Stir together flour, oats, baking soda and salt; set aside.

In large bowl, cream 1 cup butter and brown sugar till fluffy; beat in eggs and vanilla.

Stir in dry ingredients, mixing till completely combined.

In a heavy saucepan, combine chocolate chips, condensed milk and the 2 tablespoons butter.

Cook and stir over medium-low heat till chocolate and butter have melted.

Remove from heat; stir in nuts and vanilla.

To assemble, pat 2/3 of dough into pan (damp fingers work best). Spread chocolate mixture over dough.

Take remaining dough and "dot" chocolate with small bits till it's all used up.

Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes. DO NOT over bake.

Chocolate will still look moist.

Cool on wire rack.
Cut into squares.



Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Pineapple Upside Down Biscuit Cake

I saw this recipe on Facebook multiple times and finally decided I just had to make it.  It turned out beautifully and is so easy to make and tastes like something you spent all day making!




Ingredients:

3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 20 ounce can of chunk pineapple (drained, reserving 1 tablespoon liquid)
1 tube of  Pillsbury Biscuits
1 tablespoon sugar

Directions

Heat oven to 375°F.

Place butter in a 9-inch round cake pan (I do this on the stovetop but you can do it in your oven), melt the butter, than add the brown sugar, mix together on low heat until it combines and becomes a caramel like consistency.

Place your pineapple chunks around on top of the caramel, covering the entire bottom of the cake pan.

Place the biscuits on top of the pineapple, covering the entire pan, you may need to cut some of the biscuits to fit.

Brush tops of biscuits with reserved pineapple juice. Sprinkle with sugar.

Bake at 375°F. for 25 to 30 minutes or until biscuits are deep golden brown and no longer doughy in center.

Remove from oven and invert onto a plate, let it sit and cool that way, then remove the cake pan.

Serve with whipped cream or ice cream

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Cheesy Ham and Potato Soup

I had half a small Ham in the freezer and it was a little chilly, so I decided to make soup!  I really love Ham and have never made a Ham and Potato Soup before.  I have some not so fond memories of my Mom making it and it was essentially potato water.

Since I have never made it before, I took a look around the Interwebs at a few recipes and made up my own.

I had some homemade Potato Rolls from the weekend, and it paired perfectly well with my Soup. What can make it better?  Cheese!


1 tbl olive oil
4 russet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 cups of ham cubed (be sure and dry the ham cubes off with a paper towel)
1/2 small bag of instant mashed potatoes (4 ounce bag)
1 can fat free evaporated milk
3 cups water
2 chicken bouillon cubes
1/2 tsp white pepper
1/2 tsp celery salt
salt to taste

shredded sharp cheddar
diced scallions

Directions:

Place your soup pot on the stove, add olive oil, let get the pan get very hot, toss in your ham chunks, and let them sear for a few minutes, to get a little color and flavor, stir around a few times.

Reduce head and add your potatoes and water.

Bring to a boil and turn down to simmer, add your spices and let cook, stirring occasionally.

Once you can put a fork in the potatoes and they are nearly done, add your can of evaporated milk and the potato flakes, stir well.  Continue to simmer on low till the potatoes finish cooking and are easily pierced with a knife.

At this point you can use an immersion blender or potato masher and break things up a bit or leave the potatoes whole.

Serve with a bit of shredded cheese on top and scallions.

NOTE: If you aren't planning on eating it right away, cool it down and get it in the fridge, so the cooking process stops.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Potato Rolls



We were Barbecuing a Pork Roast and I wanted some bread with dinner, so I decided to whip up a batch of Potato Rolls.  This recipe is delicious and so easy!

3-1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 tablespoon sugar
1 package (1/4 ounce) quick-rise yeast
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup warm water (120° to 130°)
1/2 cup warm milk (120° to 130°)
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup mashed potato flakes
2 eggs

In a bowl, combine 1 cup flour, sugar,yeast and salt; set aside.

In another bowl, combine water, milk and butter; stir in potato flakes. Let stand for 1 minute. Add to dry ingredients. Add one egg; beat until smooth.

Add enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.

Turn onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 4-6 minutes.

Cover and let stand for 10 minutes.

Divide dough into 12 pieces; shape each into a ball.

Place in a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Place a large shallow pan on the counter; fill half full with boiling water. Place baking pan containing rolls over the water-filled pan. Cover and let rise for 15 minutes.

Lightly beat remaining egg; brush over rolls.

Bake at 375° for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan to a wire rack. dozen.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Banana Buttermilk Popovers


We make Popovers fairly frequently at my house, we are breakfast fiends.  Today we decided to try something new, by using Buttermilk and Bananas, they turned out very tender and delicious.

2 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup buttermilk
1 banana (smash it up in a bowl with a fork)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 pinch sea salt
1 cup flour
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1-2 tablespoons powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a non-stick, 6 cavity popover pan (or muffin tin) with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, beat the eggs until frothy. Whisk in the buttermilk, granulated sugar, and salt. Slowly whisk in the flour, stirring until smooth. Stir in the lemon zest.

Divide the batter into the popover pan. Add a bit of the mashed banana into each well. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until golden. Cut a small slit into each popover for steam to escape. Dust well with powdered sugar and serve warm with butter and h
oney, if desired.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

To Die For Blueberry Muffins



I was having my Nephews and their significant others over for brunch and wanted to make something sweet in addition to all the other savory things I had planned.  I love Blueberry Muffins and did not want to make the same ones I always make, so I found this wonderful recipe on the Allrecipes Website.

These muffins are extra yummy with the sugary-cinnamon crumb topping. You can certainly double the recipe and fill the muffin cups just to the top edge for a wonderful extra-generously-sized deli style muffin. Add extra blueberries too, if you want!  Next time I am doubling the batch, this recipe, as made below resulted in 9 large muffins.

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1/3 cup milk (I used Buttermilk)
1 cup fresh blueberries (I used about 1/2 cup more)

Streusel Topping

1/2 cup white sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, cubed
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees


Grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners.

Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt and baking powder.

Place vegetable oil into a 1 cup measuring cup; add the egg and enough milk to fill the cup. Mix this with flour mixture.

Fold in blueberries.

Fill muffin cups right to the top, and sprinkle with crumb topping mixture.

To Make Crumb Topping: Mix together 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup flour, 1/4 cup butter, and 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon. Mix with fork, and sprinkle over muffins before baking.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until done










Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Cheese, Beer, Garlic and Chive Bread


My husband was kind enough to bring me back some gorgeous Aged Gouda from his trip to Amsterdam, he loves his girl!  In an attempt to use up every ounce of it, I have been making cheese everything.  I had not made Cheese Beer Bread in years and this was a fantastic opportunity.

I looked at a few recipes online to get some ideas, then I went to town.  This bread is so tasty out of the oven, we could have finished it, but we didn't.  You don't want a heavy beef for this recipes, a light lager or IPA would be great.

Ingredients:

3 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tsp shipped chives
1 cup of grated Gouda
1 1⁄4 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
12 ounces beer (1 bottle)

Mix all ingredients together, mixing in beer last. Batter should be the consistency of Bisquick.

Spoon into a well greased bread pan and bake at 350 degrees (f) for about 50 minutes or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean.

Brush the bread with butter when it comes out of the oven (optional but tasty)

Let bread rest in it's pan for about 10 minutes then let it cool on a rack for another 10 minutes or so.