Archive for November, 2012

In Search Of: the Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie Part 55: Chocolate Chip Amish Puff Cookies

I got this recipe from another food blog.

  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (didn’t use because we use salted butter)
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup chocolate chips (we used only 2/3 cup)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon

1. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt (if using).

2. Cream together the butter, sugar and brown sugar. Add egg.

3. Add the flour mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 30 min.

4. Remove from fridge. Preheat oven to 350F.

5. Add in chocolate chips.

6. In a small bowl, mix together the sugar and cinnamon.

7. Roll dough into balls then coat with the cinnamon sugar. Place on baking sheets and bake 8 to 10 min.

Verdict: These were okay, but not the best. There was a taste missing to them, which I think might have been the lack of vanilla, though that could be just in my head. I like the cinnamon sugar coating, but felt that was what gave the cookies the most of their taste. Plus we used nowhere close to the amount called for.

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Bacon-and-Egg Soup

This is a food network recipe.

  • 1/2 pound thick slab bacon, cut into 1/4 inch cubes (we just used the 6 slices of bacon we had left over)
  • 4 slices of rustic Italian bread, cut into 1/2 inch cubes (since the point of this was to make homemade croutons, we used store bought croutons instead)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (didn’t use because it was used to make the croutons)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, plus 1 small piece of the rind (we didn’t use the rind)
  • 4 tablespoons parsley (we used a lot less, because we are not really fans of parsley)
  • 4 fresh eggs (we used 2, because not everyone wanted a poached egg in their soup)

1. Preheat oven to 375F (if making the homemade croutons).

2. Cook the bacon in a medium pot over medium heat until done. Transfer to a paper lined plate. Discard all but 2 tablespoons of drippings from the pot.

3. (While the bacon is cooking, toss the bread with the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and place on a baking sheet. Bake until golden and crisp, about 8 min.)

4. Add garlic to the bacon drippings and cook until golden, 1 to 2 min. Add broth, 1 1/2 cups water, the Parmesan rind, half the parsley and salt and pepper. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 10 min.

5. Adjust the heat so it is barely boiling. One at a time, crack each egg into the soup and poach until just set, 2 min. Transfer eggs to individual serving bowls.

6. Stir in 1 cup of the Parmesan cheese, the remaining parsley and salt and pepper to taste.

7. Ladle broth into bowls over the eggs. Top with bacon, croutons and remaining cheese.

Verdict: This was a weird soup. It didn’t really taste bad or good. I felt that there was something missing to it (my mom added rice to hers but it didn’t help much) and my sister thought the broth was too watered down.

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Bacon Omelette Roll

This is a Kraft recipe.

  • 8 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 4 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup salsa, warmed (this was for serving and we didn’t use)

1. Line a baking pan with parchment paper, with ends extending over the shorter ends of the pan. Spray with cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350F.

2. Beat together eggs, milk and flour. Add in bacon and oregano.

3. Bake 14 to 16 min or until edges are almost set. Top with cheese and bake 2 more min.

4. Roll up immediately after removing from oven, starting at one short end and peeling off paper as you roll. Cut and serve with salsa (if desired).

Pre-roll

Post-roll

Verdict: I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to get this to turn out as it should, but the rolling was successful and we made a nice looking very cheesy good omelette.

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Elbow Macaroni and Beef

This is a Pillsbury recipe (though I didn’t have any elbow macaroni left, so my recipe doesn’t really match the title).

  • 1 1/2 cup uncooked elbow macaroni (I used the bow tie noodles)
  • 1 1lb package of frozen broccoli florets, carrots and cauliflower (all I could see at my store was broccoli and I only used half the package, about 250g)
  • 1lb ground beef
  • 1 14 ounce can/jar of spaghetti sauce/tomato sauce
  • 4 slices of American cheese (I am assuming this is similar to the orange slices of Kraft cheese here, so that is what I used)

1. Cook noodles as directed on package. The frozen vegetables should be added to the boiling water along with the noodles. Drain.

2. Meanwhile, brown the beef in a large skillet. Drain off excess fat when everything is cooked through.

3. Add the sauce, noodles and vegetables and stir. Reduce heat to low. Halve each slice of cheese diagonally. Place each halve along the edge of the skillet so that  the longest side of each triangle touches the skillet (I used a different pattern, I think, as pictured below). Cover and let stand 1-2 min until cheese is melted.

Verdict: This is similar to a dish my mom makes, only she doesn’t use vegetables and we cover everything with mozzarella instead of American/Kraft cheese. The different cheese didn’t bother me, I don’t think it tasted funny with the noodles and sauce. But I still am not too fond of the taste of broccoli and tomato sauce. Something about that combination doesn’t work for me.

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In Search Of: the Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie Part 54: Butterscotch Pudding Chocolate Chip Cookies

I got this recipe from another food blog.

  • 1 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 3.4 ounce packet of instant butterscotch pudding
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (didn’t use because I use salted butter)
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (we used 2 cups of a mix of milk and semi-sweet)
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips (didn’t use, we used 2 cups of a mix of milk and semi-sweet chocolate)
  • 1 cup butterscotch chips (didn’t use, we used 2 cups of a mix of milk and semi-sweet chocolate)

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare baking sheets.

2. In a large bowl, beat together butter, sugar and brown sugar. Add in pudding mix, eggs and vanilla.

3. In a medium bowl, mix together flour, baking soda and salt (if using). Add to the wet ingredients. Add the chips.

4. Drop by spoonful onto baking sheets and bake 10 min.

Verdict: These were good, they stayed moist even a couple of days later. The mix of butterscotch pudding gave them an interesting flavour. They just weren’t my favourite. My sister didn’t like them at all. We made pretty large cookies, so we ended up with about 3-4 dozen.

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Apple-Cheddar Soup

This is a Better Homes and Gardens recipe.

  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 medium baking potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 cups apple cider
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Dash of cayenne pepper (we used ground black pepper)
  • 1 medium cooking apple, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • Fresh apple slices (didn’t use)
  • Green peppercorns (didn’t use)

1. Cook onion and butter in a large saucepan or pot over medium heat until tender.

2. Stir in potatoes, cider, thyme, salt and pepper. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 15 min.

3. Add chopped apples. Simmer, covered, 5 min or until potatoes are tender.

4. In a small bowl, mix together the flour and the milk. Stir into soup. Cook, while stirring, until bubbly.

5. Slowly add cheese, whisking until melted.

6. Serve with fresh apple slices and peppercorn (we didn’t do this).

Verdict: We all really liked the soup. There is something about the combination of apples and cheddar that sounds like it won’t work but that I discovered a little while ago really tastes delicious. My only complaint about the soup is that it kind of all looks the same. The broth, the apples and the potatoes are all similar in colour. My sister thought it was good but that there was something missing to make it great. Like maybe another vegetable like carrots.

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25-Minute Mexican Chicken

This is a Kraft recipe.

  • 1 lb chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces (we didn’t really cut ours into small pieces, but left them at the medium-sized halves that they were when we bought them)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup salsa (we used a mild one)
  • 1 1/2 cup instant white rice, uncooked
  • 1/2 cup Cheez Whiz

1. Combine chicken, water and salsa in a large skillet. Bring to boil. Simmer and poach the chicken 10 min (we turned them a couple of times) until chicken is cooked through.

2. Stir in rice and bring water back to boil. Remove from heat and let stand 5 min.

3. Stir in Cheez Whiz until melted and well blended.

Verdict: This sounds like a weird recipe, but my aunt makes a similar one as part of Thanksgiving/Christmas meals (cooked rice, cream of mushroom soup, broccoli and Cheez Whiz mixed together and baked for a bit), so I was willing to try it. I was afraid the salsa and the Cheez Whiz wouldn’t really work together, but I found that they gave the dish a nice taste to it.

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