Friday, March 30, 2012

Whole Wheat Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

My good friend Rebecca posted these cookies two days ago and not even 5 minutes after her post went up I was in the pantry gathering the ingredients to make them.

My son helped me make them and they were DELICIOUS! I love that they only use whole wheat flour, especially because I have 2 large bags of WW flour in my pantry! :) I ate a cookie straight from the oven, another cookie about 10 minutes after that, and well, I won't say how many more I ate. Let's just say the cookies went fast!

I am out of chocolate chips so I am off to the store today to buy more so I can make another batch of these cookies this afternoon. They are THAT good!


Whole Wheat Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Recipe from Delectable Delights with Rebecca

1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 egg
2 tsp vanilla
1 T milk
1 cup rolled oats
1 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment or silicone liners.Whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium sized bowl. Set aside. With a mixer, cream the sugars with the softened butter until smooth and fluffy. Add in the egg, vanilla, and milk. Mix well. Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, with the mixer on low. Mix just until flour disappears. Don’t over mix. Stir in the oats and chocolate chips by hand. Using a cookie scoop or two spoons, form rounded cookie dough balls, using about 1 TBSP of dough and place on prepared cookie sheets. Bake cookies for 11-12 minutes or until lightly golden around the edges. Let cookies sit on the cookie sheet for a couple of minutes to finish cooking and firm up, then carefully move to a cooling rack.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

30 by 30: Grilling (Balsamic-Garlic Pork Tenderloin)

When I made my 30 by 30 list my husband had some ideas of what to put on it. This is one of his additions. My husband is a grill master and makes the most amazing food! I take care of the inside food and he takes care of the outside food. He loves grilling and wanted to share his knowledge with me.

The funny thing is with all I have accomplished in the kitchen I have NEVER cooked on a grill before. Not even hot dogs. It was definitely time to learn!

I started the fire, prepped the coals, and cooked the food. I made a pork tenderloin, baked potatoes, and campfire cones (chocolate chips, marshmallows, and graham cracker crumbs inside an ice cream cone). Everything turned out really good!

The pork tenderloin was AMAZING! Seriously one of the best tenderloins I have ever had. The balsamic and garlic was perfect. I was quite proud that I made such a wonderful meal outside and was even prouder that I was able to impress my grill master hubby!

Make this tenderloin... you won't be disappointed!

Balsamic-Garlic Crusted Pork Tenderloin

4-5 garlic cloves, finely minced or crushed
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 pork tenderloins (about 1¼ pounds each)
2 tablespoons canola oil (if preparing in oven)
Stir together garlic, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and olive oil in a small bowl. Rub the paste all over pork. If you like or have the time, marinate overnight. If not, no worries, it will still be great!

Grill preparation:

Sear the tenderloins on all sides, then grill for about 20-30 minutes, rotating every 10 minutes, until the internal temperature is 160 degrees. Try to let it rest before slicing.

Oven preparation:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Heat canola oil in a large, heavy saute pan over medium-high heat. Working in batches if necessary, add pork, and brown all over, about 4 minutes.

Transfer pan to oven. Roast pork, turning occasionally, until the internal temperature is 160 degrees, about 20 minutes. Transfer pork to a cutting board, and try to let it rest 10 minutes before slicing.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

30 by 30: Homemade Noodles

No recipe today... just proof so I can check another thing off my "30 by 30" list. :) Making noodles was SO easy and so much fun! I have an attachment for my Kitchenaid that makes fettuccine and spaghetti. All I have to do is make the dough and then run it through my attachment. Easy peasy and the results are delicious! Homemade pasta is the way to go!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Maple-Dijon Chicken

It doesn't get much easier than 4 ingredients.... chicken thighs, pure maple syrup, dijon mustard, and apple cider vinegar. It also doesn't get much tastier! This chicken was easy and SO good! I can't wait to grill it next time as I'm sure that will just increase how tasty it is!


Maple-Dijon Chicken
Recipe slightly adapted from Witty in the City

1/2 cup dijon mustard
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1 TBSP apple cider vinegar
1 lb chicken thighs

Preheat oven to 450.

Mix mustard, maple syrup, and vinegar in a bowl. Put chicken in baking dish. Cover with mustard mixture.

Bake for 40 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Top with rosemary, if desired.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Coconut Lime Banana Bread

I love basic banana bread and I love to play around with new twists on the basic banana bread. There are so many things you can add to it or change and what results is a delicious variation on a tradtional, classic quick bread.

This loaf is loaded with lime zest and coconut and is topped with extra coconut which gets toasted during cooking and is then drizzled with a lime glaze. This banana bread is out of this world and was gone in less than 24 hours. AMAZING!

Coconut Lime Banana Bread
Recipe adapted from Our Best Bites

2 cups flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1 large lime, zested and juiced
4 TbSP butter, softened
2 large eggs
4 ripe bananas
1/4 cup sour cream
3 TBSP milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup coconut


2 TBSP coconut


1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 TBSP fresh lime juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Whisk flour, baking soda, and salt together and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, mix lime zest into sugar. Add butter and cream until blended. Add eggs and beat to combine. Add banana, sour cream, milk, and vanilla. Beat until blended.

Add flour mixture and beat at a low speed until just combined. Stir in coconut.

Pour batter into a 9×5″ loaf pan that has been sprayed with non-stick spray. Sprinkle additional 2 TBSP coconut on top.

Bake in the oven for about 1 hour or until a knife or skewer inserted in center comes out clean.

Note: Check bread after about 40 minutes. If the top has browned and the coconut pieces are looking toasty, cover top of bread lightly with a piece of foil. Continue baking until done.

When done, remove pan from oven. Let cool on a cooling rack for about 10 minutes and then carefully remove from pan.

Whisk powdered sugar and lime juice together for the glaze and then drizzle over top. Cool for another 15 minutes before slicing.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Cinnamon Streusel Pancakes

These are definitely once in a while, no other sugar for the rest of the day, delicious, amazing, fantastic pancakes! They remind me of a delicious crumb cake. We all know the crumb is the best part and these pancakes are topped with a fantastic streusel reminiscent of the crumb I love on crumb cake.

They are a very sweet pancake, no syrup needed unless you really want it. I couldn't even eat one whole pancake... although they are huge so that may have been partly to blame!

These will be made again for a special occasion... definitely fantastic! Give them a try when you are wanting something sweet for breakfast... you won't be disappointed!

Cinnamon Streusel Pancakes
Recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups buttermilk
2 large eggs
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cinnamon Streusel:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks


1. First, make the cinnamon streusel. In a medium bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter. Mix together with your hands or a fork, until you have a crumbly mixture. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together buttermilk, eggs, oil, and vanilla. Add wet ingredients to the flour mixture and stir just until combined. Do not over mix, batter will be slightly lumpy.

3. Heat a griddle or pan to medium low. Coat with cooking spray. Drop 1 cup of batter onto heated skillet. Add 2 tablespoons of the cinnamon streusel. Cook on the first side until bubbles begin to form, about 2-3 minutes. Carefully flip pancake over and cover very generously with cinnamon streusel. Cook for another 2-3 minutes or until golden brown. Continue this process to make the rest of the pancakes.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Honey Pineapple Pork Chops

It's been in the mid 70s - low 80s here in El Paso for a while now (minus a few cold days earlier this week) and we have been taking advantage of the nice weather and have been grilling a lot! These pork chops were delicious and you can NEVER go wrong with grilled pineapple! A winning combination for sure!


Honey Pineapple Pork Chops
Recipe slightly adapted from Mommy I'm Hungry

4 pork chops
8 oz can sliced pineapple & juice
1/3 Cup honey
1 TBSP mustard
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper

Prepare marinade, using pineapple juice, combine with honey, mustard, salt, and pepper. Mix well. Add pork chops to the marinade, and allow to sit for 30 minutes, turning to coat. Grill chops about 4-6 minutes on each side. Add pineapple slices to grill in the last 5 minutes.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Oven Roasted Broccoli

When I cook broccoli I usually just steam it and sprinkle with a little seasoning. My family loves it this way and it is very low maintenence. I saw this recipe for oven roasted broccoli and new that even though it takes longer than steaming it was going to be worth it!

This broccoli is delicious! The lemon zest and parmesan take it to a whole new level. We LOVED it!


Oven Roasted Broccoli
Recipe adapted from Amateur Gourmet

4 lbs broccoli, cut into large florets
Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
Parmesan Cheese

Preheat oven to 425.

Toss broccoli with olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic. Put on foil lined cookie sheet.

Roast in oven for 20-25 minutes.

Remove from oven and toss in lemon juice, zest, and parmesan.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs

Almost 2 years ago I posted a spaghetti and meatball recipe that I regularly use. When I posted that recipe I had mentioned this stuffed meatball recipe and said that I would post it soon. I'm thinking 22 months later is not really SOON, but hey, better late than never!

These meatballs are amazing! I don't make them often enough but am always so glad when I finally do. They are great on top of spaghetti and they also make fantastic meatball hoagies!


Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs

1 lb ground beef
1 lb ground pork or mild Italian sausage
1 cup breadcrumbs
1 TBSP Italian seasoning
3 eggs
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 lb mozzarella, cut into cubes

Olive Oil
Marinara (jar or homemade)

In a large bowl mix beef through pepper. Form into 2" balls. Press a cheese cube in the middle and seal the meat around it.

Heat 1/2" olive oil in a large skillet. Brown meatballs and then set aside on plate.

Pour marinara sauce into pan; bring to a simmer. Add meatballs and simmer until cooked through, about 30 minutes.

Serve over spaghetti or on top of a hoagie.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

TWD - BWJ: Irish Soda Bread

Four ingredients... flour, baking soda, salt, and buttermilk. Easy and delicious!

Thanks to Carla of Chocolate Moosey and Cathleen of My Culinary Mission for hosting this week. The recipe can be found at their blogs.

Monday, March 19, 2012

30 by 30: Homemade Tortellini

I love homemade pasta. Yes, it takes more time but it tastes SO good! I usually either make lasagna or ravioli when I make pasta so I was happy to try something new. Tortellini is a little more time consuming than ravioli because each one had to be formed by hand but it was totally worth it! My family loved these little guys and I will definitely be making more tortellini!

To view my 30 by 30 list click HERE.

Homemade Tortellini
Recipe from Doughmesstic


3 cups All Purpose Flour
4 Large Eggs
Dash of Salt
2 TBSP Italian Seasoning

For Filling:

1 cup mozzarella
1/3 cup Parmesan
Pinch Garlic Powder

Using your stand mixer and dough hook, combine all ingredients on low speed until very well combined and the dough is a big ball. This is a tough dough, so watch the mixer – it will fight you a bit. Remove the dough and begin to knead the dough by hand until smooth and pushes back. I kneaded by hand at least 15 minutes, maybe more. Form into a ball and tighly wrap in plastic while you prepare the filling.

Have the filling ready when you are starting to roll out the dough. The dough needs to rest for around a half hour or more before you roll it. Cut the dough into thirds, and re-wrap the 2/3 you aren’t rolling so that it doesn’t dry out.

Roll out the dough with a pin or a pasta maker.

Once it is rolled out, using a large round cookie cutter (2 inches or so in diameter is what I used), cut out as many circles as you can. This dough will dry out pretty quickly, so don’t wander off. The dough that is left over after cutting the circles can be re-rolled to make more circle.

Once cut out, put a small amount of the cheese filling on the round, apply a small amount of water to half of the circle with your fingers, then fold in half, making sure to seal tightly. Finally, pull the sides together to form the classic tortellini shape and pinch the ends together.

Place the filled tortellini on a dishtowel as you go, so that they won’t stick to your work surface. Once you have finished the first third, move on to the remaining dough and repeat the process until all of the dough has been used.

Prepare as desired.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Pineapple Upside Down Pancakes - Two Ways

This morning I was trying to think of what kind of pancakes to make that would use the fruit I have in the fridge. It came down to strawberry pancakes or pineapple pancakes. I made strawberry pancakes last weekend so pineapple was the winner!

I decided to do a take on pineapple upside down cake. I had both pineapple rings and pineapple chunks so I did these pancakes two ways. The first way was to put a pineapple ring on the griddle and then I sprinkled it with brown sugar. I immediately covered the pineapple with pancake batter and cooked it like a normal pancake. I love how the brown sugar caramelized! It was SO good!

The second way I made these pancakes was to mix in the pineapple chunks to the batter. I poured the batter onto the griddle and put the brown sugar on top so it would caramelize when I flipped it. Both ways made amazing tasting pancakes! The only thing I wish I had done differently was to put a cherry in the middle but I didn't have any... maybe next time!


Pineapple Upside Down Pancakes

1 1/2 cups flour
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 egg
1 1/3 cups buttermilk
3 tablespoons oil
Pineapple Rings or Pineapple Chunks

Mix dry ingredients in large bowl. Add wet and mix until combined.

If using pineapple rings, place pineapple ring on hot griddle and sprinkle with brown sugar. Top with pancake batter and cook.

If using chunks, mix chunks into pancake batter and spoon onto griddle. Sprinkle pancake with brown sugar and cook.
Brown Sugar

Friday, March 16, 2012

Country Club Chicken

Here is another recipe I found on Pinterest and it was amazing! It didn't disappoint! I was iffy about it once I saw that it called for 2 cans of cream of mushroom soup since I usually don't cook with it but it was worth it! The sauce has bacon, mushrooms, apple, cheese, and onion and is served over chicken and spaghetti. Seriously delicious and definitely a comfort meal!


Country Club Chicken
Recipe from Kayotic Kitchen

1 pound spaghetti
4 chicken breasts
1 large onion, diced
7 oz mushrooms, sliced
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
5 slices bacon
1/4 cup dry white wine or chicken broth
2/3 cup sharp cheddar (I used mozzarella)
1 apple (I used Granny Smith), diced
butter or oil
salt & pepper

Cook bacon in skillet until crisp; set aside and crumble. Do not drain pan.

Season chicken with salt and pepper and brown on each side in same skillet you cooked the bacon in. Place chicken in casserole dish.

Cook onion, mushrooms, and apple in skillet until softened. Add wine or chicken broth to deglaze pan. Mix in soup, bacon, and cheese; heat through.

Pour sauce over chicken and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

While chicken is baking, cook spaghetti according to package directions. Serve chicken and sauce over spaghetti.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

A Trio of Truffles - Cake Batter, Oreo, & Sugar Cookie

Sometimes (okay, a lot of the time!) it is hard for me to decide what type of dessert to make. This probably stems from the fact that I have hundreds of desserts recipes torn out from magazines, bookmarked in cookbooks, and pinned on Pinterest! This is why you see 3 truffles pictured instead of just one... I just couldn't decide!

The first is a cake batter truffle. Not a cake ball where you bake the cake and mix it with frosting but cake mix mixed with butter, vanilla, and milk. So delicious! LOVE LOVE LOVE this truffle!

The second truffle is an Oreo truffle. I've been making these for years and they are EVERYWHERE! I'm not sure there is anyone who hasn't had one of these before. Let's be honest... you can't go wrong with Oreos and cream cheese!

The third truffle is a lemon-lime sugar cookie truffle. Lemon and lime zest are mixed in with sugar cookie dough, baked, and then crumbled and mixed with cream cheese. So citrus-y and delicious!

Make any one of these and you won't be disappointed... make all 3 and have a party! :) Enjoy!

Cake Batter Truffles

2 1/2 cups yellow cake mix
1 stick butter
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup milk

White Chocolate or Almond Bark, for dipping

Mix all ingredients until well blended. Roll into balls. Dip into white chocolate or almond bark. Decorate with sprinkles.

Oreo Truffles

1 package Oreos
1 block (8oz) cream cheese

White Chocolate or Almond Bark, for dipping

Mix oreos and cream cheese until smooth. Roll into balls. Dip into white chocolate or almond bark. Drizzle with milk chocolate, if desired.

Lemon Lime Sugar Cookie Truffles
Recipe adapted from Sing For Your Supper

1 batch of sugar cookie dough (homemade or box mix)
zest 1 large lemon and 1 large lime
4 oz cream cheese

White Chocolate or Almond Bark, for dipping

Mix cookie dough with zests. Bake cookie dough in square pan; cool & crumble.

Add in the cream cheese and mix until the cookie crumbs and cream cheese are completely mixed together. Roll into 1-1 1/2 inch balls and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Dip into white chocolate or almond bark.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Honey Lime Drumsticks

These drumsticks were beyond easy to throw together and were incredibly delicious!

Honey Lime Drumsticks
Recipe from Pillsbury

8 chicken drumsticks
2 tsp garlic-pepper blend
3 TBSP honey
3 TBSP lime juice
2 TBSP chopped cilantro

Sprinkle chicken with garlic-pepper blend.

In a small bowl, combine honey and lime juice; set aside.

Grill chicken until done or bake at 450 for 35-45 minutes. Baste with honey lime mixture during last 10 minutes of cooking.

Sprinkle with cilantro before serving.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Creamy Chicken Taquitos and Homemade Refried Beans

I love any type of Mexican food and when I saw these taquitos on Pinterest I knew I would be trying them soon. They were super easy to make and incredibly delicious! The filling was super creamy thanks to the addition of cream cheese. YUM!

The refried beans were super easy, too. I just threw dried beans, seasonings, onion, and jalepeno into the crockpot and let it cook for 8 hours. Then I mashed them, added a little cream cheese for creaminess, and enjoyed them! What a delicious dinner!


Creamy Chicken Taquitos
Recipe from Annie's Eats

3 oz. cream cheese, softened
¼ cup salsa
1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
1 tsp. chili powder
½ tsp. cumin
½ tsp. onion powder
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp. chopped cilantro
1-2 green onions, chopped
2 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 cup shredded Mexican cheese (cheddar, pepper jack, etc. would also be good)
10-12 6-inch flour tortillas
Cooking spray
Kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 425˚ F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, salsa, lime juice, spices, cilantro, green onions, chicken and shredded cheese. Mix thoroughly until well combined.

Briefly heat the tortillas in the microwave to make them soft enough to roll easily, about 20-3o seconds. Place a tortilla on a work surface. Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of the filling mixture down the middle of the tortilla. Roll the tortilla up tightly around the filling. Place seam-side down on a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining tortillas and filling, spacing the assembled taquitos evenly on the baking sheet. Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray and sprinkle with a pinch of kosher salt. (You may be tempted to skip the sprinkle of salt, but it really adds a nice touch.)

(To freeze before baking, transfer the baking sheet to the freezer and chill the assembled taquitos 30-60 minutes. Transfer to a freezer-safe container or plastic bag. To bake from the freezer, simply add a few additional minutes to the original baking time, until the filling is warmed through.)

Bake 15-20 minutes, until crisp and golden brown. Serve with sour cream and salsa, if desired.

Homemade Refried Beans
Recipe from Budget Bytes

1 lb dry pinto beans
1 medium onion
1 medium jalepeno
1 TBSP minced garlic
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder
10-15 cranks black pepper
1 TBSP salt
6 cups water

Spread the dry beans out onto a baking sheet to pick through them and remove any stones or bad pieces. Place the beans in a colander and rinse with cool water.

Slice open the jalapeno and remove the seeds and ribs by scraping with a spoon. Dice the jalapeno and the onion. Place the onion and jalapeno in the slow cooker along with the garlic, cumin, chili powder, and black pepper. Do not add the salt.

Add the sorted and rinsed beans to the slow cooker along with 6 cups of water. Give everything a good stir to distribute the seasoning. Secure the lid and cook on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 8. It's okay if they cook longer, they'll just be easier to mash.

After cooking, remove as much water as possible and reserve it in a bowl. Mash the beans and add the reserved water back in as needed. Make the beans a little thinner in texture than you'd expect because they will thicken as they cool. Season the beans with salt at this point. By adding salt at the end, you'll need to add less and the beans won't be so tough. I used approximately 1 Tbsp but add a little at a time until you're satisfied. Serve warm!

To freeze, divide the beans up and refrigerate until thoroughly cooled. Place in freezer safe containers, remove as much air as possible, label and date, and then transfer to the freezer.
1 lb. dry pinto beans $1.32
1 medium onion $0.89
1 medium jalapeno $0.10
1 Tbsp minced garlic $0.24
1 tsp cumin $0.05
1/2 tsp chili powder $0.05
10-15 cranks cracked black pepper $0.05
1 Tbsp salt $0.05
6 cups water
1 lb. dry pinto beans $1.32
1 medium onion $0.89
1 medium jalapeno $0.10
1 Tbsp minced garlic $0.24
1 tsp cumin $0.05
1/2 tsp chili powder $0.05
10-15 cranks cracked black pepper $0.05
1 Tbsp salt $0.05
6 cups water

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Sausage & Pepper Fettuccine

In addition to the vinaigrette I received from Moni's Natural Dressing & Sauces I received 2 jars of marinara sauce. I used one (the Garlic & Basil Marinara) for regular spaghetti. It was a delicious sauce and a great dinner.

The second jar (the Original Marinara) I used to create this dinner. It was a quick and easy dinner and super delicious. My family loved it!

Thanks again to Moni's Natural for sending me your products to try. We really enjoyed them! If you are interested in buying Moni's Natural Dressing & Sauces please visit their website to order online or to find a store near you!

Sausage & Pepper Fettuccine

1 package mild italian sausage, casings removed
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 bell pepper, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1 jar Moni's Original Mariana
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup mozzarella
1 lb fettuccine, cooked and drained
Parmesan, for serving

Cook sausage, bell pepper, and onion in olive oil until sausage is browned and crumbly. Add marinara and salt; simmer for 5 minutes. Add mozzarella and heat until melted through. Serve over fettuccine and top with parmesan.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Baked Chicken & Moni's Natural Dressings and Sauces

About 2 weeks ago I was contacted by Moni's Natural Dressings and Sauces and was asked if I was interested in trying their sauces. They sent me 3 differents kinds and I was excited to try them out!

The first sauce I used was the Famous House Vinaigrette. It is a tangy tomato and oil vinaigrette and it was delicious! You could use it strictly as a salad dressing but I opted to try a recipe on their website for baked chicken. The chicken was so flavorful and I loved the tang from the vinaigrette!

Thank you to Moni's for sending me your product! I look forward to trying the other 2 sauces (I will post about those in the next two days).

Baked Chicken

4 Boneless Chicken Breast
1 1/2 Cups of Moni's Famous House Vinaigrette
1/2 Cup of Italian Bread Crumbs
4 Tbsp of Grated Parmigiana Cheese
1 Tsp Salt
1/2 Tsp Pepper

Preheat oven to 450F Combine chicken with Moni’s Dressing and place in a dish. Mix remaining ingredients in a small bow and sprinkle on top of the chicken. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Serve with pasta marinara and Moni’s Summer Salad.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

TWD: Baking with Julia - RUGELACH

Rugelach is a cream cheese pastry dough that is usually filled with dried fruit and nuts. They are traditionally rolled like a crescent roll but this recipe is filled with so much that it is rolled like a jelly roll. I ended up baking mine flat like a cinnamon roll, though, because my filling was falling out! :)

We made rugelach with the original TWD and I did a craisin/white chocolate variation. I remember loving it so much that I decided to go against the recipe and use craisins, white chocolate, and pecans again. Mmmm, mmmm, mmmm.... LOVED THEM!

Thanks to Margaret of The Urban Hiker and Jessica of My Baking Heart for hosting this week. The recipe can be found at their blogs.

Monday, March 5, 2012

30 by 30: Homemade English Muffins

 I have a little more than 6 months left until my 30th birthday and considering I have only posted 1 other "30 by 30" recipe I figured I needed to get busy!!!

English muffins have been on my list for quite some time now but I never got around to making them. They aren't difficult to make and taste SO good when they are fresh! I will definitely be making them more often!

To view my 30 by 30 list click HERE.

Homemade English Muffins
Recipe from AllRecipes

1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
3 tablespoons sugar, divided
1/4 cup warm water (105 degrees to 115 degrees)
1 cup milk, scalded
3 tablespoons butter or margarine
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole wheat flour
3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 egg, beaten
Dissolve yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in water. Set aside.
In a mixing bowl, combine milk, butter, salt, whole wheat flour and 1 cup all-purpose flour. Beat well with an electric mixer. Add egg and yeast mixture; beat until smooth. By hand, stir in enough remaining all-purpose flour to make a soft dough. Knead on a lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes.
Place in a greased bowl; cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
Punch dough down. Place on floured surface. Roll to 1/2-in. thickness. Cut into 4-in. circles. Allow to rise until doubled.
Lightly sprinkle an electric fry pan or griddle with cornmeal. Bake over low heat for 10 minutes until nicely browned. Turn and bake 10 minutes longer. Cool. Store in the refrigerator.
To serve, split with a fork and toast.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Strawberry Shortcake Pancakes

I picked up some strawberries yesterday and wanted to use them in a delicious way. I debated making a strawberry syrup for our regular buttermilk pancakes but then the idea for Strawberry Shortcake Pancakes came to me. Boy am I glad I went this route! These are some of the best pancakes I have EVER tasted! So amazing! The addition of the vanilla extract (I use vanilla bean paste but extract will work, too) and the almond extract really make the pancake. These will definitely be made again and again.


Strawberry Shortcake Pancakes

1 1/2 cups flour
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 egg
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
3 tablespoons oil
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
12 tsp almond extract
Whipped Cream

Mix dry ingredients in a bowl; set aside. Whisk together wet ingredients in another bowl. Mix wet into dry.

Cook pancakes on griddle until done.

Layer pancakes with sliced strawberries and whipped cream.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Chocolate & Peanut Butter Chip Cookies

These cookies were prepared and baked by my 6 year old daughter. I gave her a base recipe and she adapted it to include more chocolate and peanut butter chips. She worked very hard on these cookies (they were a birthday gift for her teacher) and I am so very proud of her! She is becoming quite the little baker!


Chocolate & Peanut Butter Chip Cookies (AKA Anya's Cookies)

1 cup butter
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups milk chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups peanut butter chips

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine dry ingredients; set aside.

Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla. Gradually mix in dry ingredients. Fold in chips.

Scoop onto cookie sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes or until done.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Chicken Parm Hoagies

This is a quick dinner or lunch that is easy to make and super delicious. My family loves it! Enjoy!

Chicken Parm Hoagies

1 lb Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, sliced
2 cups breadcrumbs
1 TBSP garlic powder
1 TBSP salt
1 TBSP oregano
1 TBSP basil
1/2 cup parmesan
2 eggs, beaten
Marinara Sauce
Swiss Cheese

Preheat oven to 425.

Mix all dry ingredients. Dip chicken in egg, then dry mixture. Pan fry until browned then transfer to oven and bake 8-10 minutes.

Toast hoagie. Top with chicken, marinara, and swiss. Return to oven until cheese melts.

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