Sunday, December 27, 2015

Egg in the Middle

Now this is a very old recipe that is a tradition in our family!....My Mom used to make this for me when I was little and I used to make it for my kids, it is still one of their favorites!..... And I would make it for their friends when they spent the night!......Well I still make it today and everyone loves them.....It is getting your eggs and toast all in one. I know there are other names for this like Egg in the hole or Hen in the basket.....But we have always called them Egg in the middle!....I used a flower cookie cutter, but you could use a heart or a round shape..Here is what I do ...Enjoy!
Bread of your choice
1. Using cookie cutter of your choice, cut out center of bread
2. Butter both sides and add to a heated and buttered skillet
3. Add egg to center and let cook for 4-5 minutes
4. Butter both sides the cutout piece of bread and add to pan, flip  when golden
5. Flip bread with egg over and cook for 1 -3 minutes, (you can lift corner with spatula and check for doneness)
6. Add to plate and use the bread around the egg and your extra piece to dunk!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Braised Short Ribs (slow cooker)

Well lately for some reason every time we go out to dinner and there have been Short Ribs on the menu I have been ordering them!.....There is just something about this comfort food that made me want to try and make them myself....after researching a lot of recipes this is what I came up with......I don't know if my husband was just being nice, but he said they were the best he has ever had!...So I guess I will be making them a lot more often!....Here is what I did...Enjoy!

6 whole short ribs (cut into 3)
salt and pepper
2 Tablespoons olive oil +1 Tablespoon butter
1 onion chopped
1/2 cup dry red wine
2 cloves garlic minced
2/3 cup ketchup
2 Tablespoons agave nectar
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
3 Tablespoons Liquid Amino's (braggs)
2 Cups beef broth
1/2 teaspoon ground thyme
2 Tablespoons cornstarch (divided)
sauce ingredients
1. Cut ribs into thirds and trim any excess fat off the edge. Salt and pepper them
2. Add oil and butter to fry pan and add the ribs, in batches if you have to...brown both sides and add to crock pot when done...leaving the juices in the pan.
3. Add chopped onion to the pan and cook about 10 minutes add the wine and cook 5 more minutes add the minced garlic and then the rest of the sauce ingredients at the end whisk in 1 Tablespoon of cornstarch before adding over the ribs in crock pot
4. Cover and cook on low for 8-9 hours
5. When done sauce may be a little oily, ladle out a couple of ladles full of sauce into a saucepan and heat on medium and add 1 Tablespoon of cornstarch whisking until thick, once thick add this back to crockpot, this will give you a nice rich gravy.
I served over mashed potatoes with a side of glazed carrots!
ribs do shrink a lot when cooking, you can add more than 6 if needed

Monday, December 14, 2015

Shrimp Lo Mein (gluten free)

I am becoming a big fan of these Asian rice noodles I have been using lately. I would always see them in the grocery store and finely decided to give them a try!....They can be used for a lot of your pasta recipes..You can switch out the shrimp in here and use chicken and you can also use broccoli instead of peas!...I used what veggies I had on hand. You can conform this any way you like using your favorites!...I also used dried ginger that I found in the herb section, but you could grate fresh if you like. And I used liquid aminos instead of soy sauce to make it a little healthier....Here is what I did....Enjoy!
1 package Lo Mein noodles
2 Tablespoons sesame oil
2 carrots (Sliced)
1 package sliced mushrooms
1or1 1/2 cups frozen peas
1 shallot (diced)
1 pound raw shrimp (no tails)
scallion or green onion for garnish
1/4 cup Chicken broth
1/4 cup agave nectar
2 Tablespoons Rice Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Braggs Liquid Amino (or soy sauce)
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 clove garlic (minced)
sauce ingredients
this is the ginger I used
here are a couple versions of the rice noodles, either is fine
adding the shrimp to the veggies
1. Place all of the sauce ingredients in a bowl...whisk and set aside.
2. Heat sesame oil in pan add the vegetables and cook for 10 to 15 minutes until carrots are soft.
3. Add shrimp and cook until no longer translucent.
4. add sauce and simmer.
4. Cook noodles according to package directions.
5. Drain noodles ...quickly rinse and drain again .....add to serving bowl ...add the shrimp and veggies and toss to mix together...you can garnish with scallions or green onion

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Baking Tip......Check the date on your Baking powder

Here is a Baking tip for you, that I had to find out the hard way!
Last year my daughter and I were doing our Holiday baking and making my Italian cutout cookie recipe, we tasted one and they were awful!!
It tasted like I had put a cup of salt in them....so we threw that batch away and started over. Well the second batch tasted the same way, needless to say after the third time I went one by one and checked each ingredient I used. The culprit was expired Baking Powder!,,,I felt bad wasted all of those ingredients,,,It was very frustrating!.....So now I always check the dates on all of the ingredients I am using.....Lesson Learned!!

Friday, December 4, 2015

Gluten- free Butter Balls (Snowballs)

Well I have been in the test kitchen working to see if I could convert all of my regular holiday cookie recipes to be gluten free...So far my S- cookie recipe was a winner!...So I thought I would try one of my other favorites the Butter Ball! Some people call these Snowball cookies....The thing with gluten free baking is that dough can become crumbly and not hold together because of the lack in gluten, so some sort of binder needs to be added to compensate for that. That is where  the ingredient Xanthum gum comes in. Another ingredient used is Guar gum (Bob's Red Mill brand has both of these)..well I used both in this recipe for insurance because the texture of this cookie can be crumbly to begin with and it worked!....If you don't need this cookie to be Gluten-free you can omit the xanthum and guar gums and just use the same amount of regular flour...I used Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 baking flour(pictured below) for this and the other cookies I have tested and it has been working really well....Well here is what I did ....Enjoy!
2 1/4 Cups Bob's 1 to 1 flour...or Regular
1/2 Cup Confectioners Sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon Xanthum gum
1 teaspoon Guar gum
1/2 Cup chopped nuts (I used pecans)
1 Cup (2 sticks) soft butter 
1 teaspoon vanilla
More confectioner sugar for rolling cooled cookies in
Here is the flour below
In your mixer with dough hook attachment,  add the flour, sugar, salt and the gums and give it a few rounds of mixing on low to blend
Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until everything is incorporated
It should look like this
It will look a little crumbly...but when you roll into ball and squeeze together from hand to hand it gets moist and comes together.
I used a tablespoon size cookie scoop to measure size and then roll into a ball
Place onto a cookie sheet (I used a silpat)
Bake at 350 for 8 minutes...
bottom will be golden
When cool roll into a bowl of Confectioner Sugar
You can store in a seal tight container until serving
(If they last that long!)
This recipe yields about 4 dozen, depending on size
If you don't have a mixer this can be mixed by hand
Do not roll these too big...these tend to be better on the smaller side