Thursday, January 30, 2014

Halibut with Salsa Verde Sauce

We love halibut because it is a wonderful white fish that does not have the fishy taste. These came from the waters of Alaska and were given to us by a friend. 
Cut the fish into serving-size pieces.  Salt and pepper one side and place it in a pan with about 3 Tablespoons olive oil and 1 Tablespoon of butter.  Put the seasoned side down and then season the other side.  Cook about 5-6 minutes on each side. While the fish is cooking make the salsa verde sauce.
1 small shallot
1 Tablespoon capers- smashed
1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
3 Tablespoons parsley-chopped
3 Tablespoons fresh basil- chopped
salt and pepper to taste
When fish is cooked on both sides, remove to a paper towel to drain.  Place on a serving plate and top with the salsa verde sauce.

Pork tenderloin in a crock pot

I knew that I wanted to cook my pork tenderloin in the crock pot so I did what any person would do, I googled it. This is the recipe that I used:
Amazing pork tenderloin in a crock pot

2 pork tenderloins came in the package so I just decided to cook them both the same way.  I figured I could use them the next day for pulled-pork sandwiches. This will be our go-to pork tenderloin from now until I find one better.
I forgot to take a picture of the meal last night so I just took a picture of  Jud's 3rd slider.  We both loved them.We used Hawaiian Rolls as our slider 


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Butterscotch Peanut Butter Bars

I got this recipe from food network's Trisha Yearwood. Butterscotch Peanut Butter Bars
Jud and I were watching the show and decided that we really wanted some. I didn't have any butterscotch chips, but I had chocolate chips. She said on the show that they would work fine and since I had everything else it was a done deal.

Printable Version
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup quick-cooking oatmeal (I had old fashioned oatmeal so I just put it in the food processor and pulsed it a few times)
6 ounces butterscotch chips (I used chocolate chips)
Ingredients for glaze:
1 cup confectioners' sugar
4 tablespoons milk
1/4 cup peanut butter
Directions for cake:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9" X 13" baking dish. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and 1/2 cup peanut butter. Add the egg and vanilla. Sift the flour with the baking soda and salt. Mix the oatmeal into the flour and stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Mix well. Spread the batter in the baking dish using your hands to make it even. It is a little messy. Sprinkle the butterscotch or chocolate chips over the batter and bake for 20-25 minutes, until browned around the edges.
Directions for Glaze:
Whisk together the confectioners' sugar, milk, and 1/4 cup peanut butter. Spread the glaze evenly over the warm bars. Allow to cool completely before cutting into squares.

Not your Mama's Green Bean Casserole

Printable Version

1 1/2 pounds fresh green beans, cleaned and cut into halves or thirds
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 tablespoon butter
1 cup minced shallots
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
9-10 ounce package crimini mushrooms, thinly sliced
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1/3 cup half and half
1/2 teaspoon salt
freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground sage

Step by step
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  3. Throw the green beans in and cook for 4 minutes.
  4. Drain and shock the beans in an ice water bath; set aside.
  5. In a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium high heat.
  6. Add 1/2 cup of the shallots and cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes. Allow the shallots to caramelize and brown, but don't burn them!
  7. Remove the skillet from heat and add the butter, allowing it to melt.
  8. Add the breadcrumbs to the shallots and stir to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper and set aside.
  9. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
  10. Add the rest of the shallots and cook, stirring, for about two minutes.
  11. Next, the mushrooms. Throw all of them into the skillet and cook for about five minutes more, stirring often, till the mushrooms are browned.
  12. Sprinkle the flour over the mushrooms and stir to combine.
  13. Continue stirring while the flour cooks into the mushrooms for about a minute.
  14. Slowly pour in the broth, whisking as you go to get out any lumps and to pick up the delicious brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
  15. Once the broth is incorporated, add the half and half and sage and stir to combine.
  16. Allow the mixture to come to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and simmer till thickened, usually a few minutes.
  17. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  18. Add the green beans into the mushroom mixture and fold together.
  19. Pour the green beans and mushroom sauce into a baking dish.
  20. Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture over the top.
  21. Slide the baking dish into the oven and bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes.
  22. Pull that beauty out of the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes before serving.

Crispy Crab Balls

These crab balls are supposed to be fried, but I decided to bake them in a 400 degree oven for 5 minutes and then drizzle a little butter over each crab ball and then bake another 15-20 minutes. Much healthier and I didn't miss the frying taste. I cut the recipe in 1/2 and it made 9 crab balls about the size in the picture.
I will print the recipe as it was given to me.

1 pound fresh crab meat
3 slices of white bread, crust removed (I used plain bread crumbs)
1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon Old Bay Seasoning
2 tablespoons butter
Make breadcrumbs in food processor so they are chopped up fine. In a large bowl, mix together egg, mayonnaise, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and Old Bay seasoning. Add crab meat and mix by hand to avoid breaking up too many of the lumps. You may need to break up the very large lumps however so the crab balls will stay together. Shape into 24 balls and fry in batches in hot oil until golden brown, turning once. Drain on paper towels. Serve with your favorite sauce or don't use any.
Sherry says----- If they used oil to fry the crab balls, I didn't see where they used the butter.

For the sauce --- We used = parts of mayonnaise and Dijon Mustard and then 1/2 as much honey. Mix together and dip the crab balls in this sauce.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Red Velvet-White Chocolate Cheesecake

And this is it iced and ready to serve


This is the cake before it is iced
I found this recipe in the 2013 December issue of Southern Living
Ingredients for Cheesecake Layers
2 (8inch) round disposable aluminum foil cake pans
1 (12oz.) package white chocolate morsels
5 (8oz) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Red Velvet Layers
1 cup butter, softened
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
6 large eggs
3 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 (8oz) container sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 (1oz.) bottles red liquid food coloring
3 (8inch) round disposable aluminum foil cake pans.
The disposable pans just make it easier to remove the cheesecake. I used them in both the red velvet and the cheesecake because I wanted them to match. My cake pans had a little indention all the way around the pan.
White Chocolate Frosting
2 (4oz) white chocolate baking bars, chopped
1/2 cup boiling water
1 cup butter, softened
1 (32)oz. package powdered sugar, sifted  (I didn't sift it and it seemed fine)
Garnishes (I did not garnish it)
Store-bought coconut candies
White Candy Leaves 
Here is the link for the recipe  White Candy Leaves
1. Prepare Cheesecake Layers:
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line bottom and sides of 2 disposable cake pans with aluminum foil, allowing 2-3 inches to extend over sides; lightly grease foil. (I used cooking spray).
2. Microwave white chocolate morsels in a microwave-safe bowl according to package directions, cool 10 minutes.
3. Beat cream cheese and melted chocolate at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add 1 cup sugar, beating well. Add 2 eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until yellow disappears after each addition. Stir in 1 tablespoon vanilla. Pour into prepared pans.
4. Bake @ 300 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until almost set. Turn oven off. Let cheesecakes stand in oven, with door closed, 30 minutes. Remove from oven to wire racks; cool completely (about 1 1/2 hours). Cover and chill 8 hours, or freeze 24 hours to 2 days.
5. Prepare Red Velvet Layers:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat 1 cup softened butter at medium speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until creamy. Gradually add 2 1/2 cups sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add 6 eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition.
6. Stir together flour and next 2 ingredients (3T. cocoa, 1/4 t. baking soda)  Add to butter mixture alternately with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition. Stir in 2 teaspoons vanilla. Stir in food coloring. Spoon batter into 3 greased and floured 8-inch disposable cake pans.
7. Bake 350 degrees for 20-24 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean. It took mine a little longer so be sure to test it. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire rack and cool completely (about 1 hour)
8. Prepare Frosting: Whisk together white chocolate and 1/2 cup boiling water until chocolate melts. (Yes you do mix the two) Cool 20 minutes on counter; chill 30 minutes in refrigerator.
9. Beat 1 cup butter and chilled chocolate mixture at low speed until blended. Beat at medium speed 1 minute. Increase speed to high, beat 2-3 minutes or until fluffy. Gradually add the powdered sugar and salt, beating at low speed until blended. Increase speed to high; beat1-2 minutes or until smooth and fluffy.
Assemble Cake: Place 1 layer Red Velvet on a serving platter. Top with 1 layer Cheesecake. Repeat with remaining layers of Red Velvet and Cheesecakes, alternating and ending with Red Velvet on top. Spread top and sides of cake with White Chocolate Frosting. Store in refrigerator.
This is a cake that you have to think of ahead of time. There are many steps and it is pretty labor intensive, but my baby girl turns 40 only once in her life. Hope it is as delicious as it looks.


Friday, January 24, 2014

Great Grandma Turano's Meatballs

This recipe comes from Southern Living Magazine. I forgot to take a picture until after we had eaten, so there is no spaghetti on the pate. I served this with a large salad. I only made 1 pound of ground beef and I still had about 18 meatballs left.  I plan to serve it when Bodie and Nicholas come to stay with us.  I'm pretty sure that they will like it.

Printable Version
Ingredients for the Sauce:
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
Shake of red pepper flakes
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1- 16 oz. can tomato paste
2 -15 oz. cans diced tomatoes pureed I used both cans because I wanted extra sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
Handful of basil
1/4 teaspoon thyme
In a Dutch oven saute'  onion, garlic, and pepper flakes in oil over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add tomato paste and sugar. Mash the paste into the onion mixture 1-2 minutes. Add 1 tomato paste can of water.(I didn't do this) Stir well. Add tomato puree (I put the diced tomatoes in a blender and pureed until smooth), oregano, fennel seeds, thyme and basil. Simmer over low heat several hours.  Add water as needed.  I put the sauce and cooked meatballs in the crockpot on high for 2 1/2 hours.
Ingredients for the Meatballs: I cut this recipe for the meatballs in 1/2
2 pounds ground beef
2 eggs
salt and pepper
1 cup Italian bread crumbs
1 cup parsley
olive oil for frying
1 cup Parmesan
fennel seeds
Directions for Meatballs:
Mix all ingredients until thoroughly combined. Roll into balls and set aside. In a large skillet fry in oil in batches. Place in simmering sauce. Simmer 30 minutes. Serve over pasta with lots of cheese.
Sherry's variation:
I made the meat into balls and placed them on a cookie sheet. I baked them in a 400 degree oven for about 20-30 minutes.  Then I placed them in the crockpot with the sauce.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Slimmed-down Stuffed Shrimp

I think this came from the San Antonio Express News.  This recipe makes 24 stuffed shrimp.  I cut the recipe in 1/2 and only stuffed 8 shrimp.  My shrimp were overstuffed, but we liked it that way. 

Printable Version
1 pound jumbo shrimp
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup finely shopped celery
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup finely chopped red pepper
1/2 cup finely chopped green pepper--I only used the red pepper
2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup light mayonnaise
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup whole-wheat bread crumbs
1/2 pound lump crabmeat
Paprika, for garnish
Buy the shrimp raw and peel all but the very tail end off, which you leave on for decorative purposes. Then, cut through the backside, where the "mud vein" is, and rinse it off.
Continue cutting almost all the way through, until you get what looks like a butterfly. Flatten the shrimp and keep them chilled until you are ready to fill them. Melt the butter in a large nonstick skillet and add the celery, onion, and peppers. Saute' over medium to medium-high heat, adding water as needed to prevent burning, for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the parsley, lemon juice, mustard, pepper, mayonnaise and egg. Add the bread crumbs and combine thoroughly. Add the crabmeat and mix again. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place the prepared shrimp, cPrintable Versionut side up on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with nonstick baking spray, and place a walnut-size mound of stuffing on top of each shrimp. Sprinkle with paprika. Bake for 10-12 minutes of until the shrimp are pink and the stuffing is hot.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Chicken in Creamy Tomato Sauce

Some day I will learn to write where I got a recipe.  None of the recipes are my own creation. but when I was collecting recipes, I never dreamed I would be writing a blog and needed to know where I got the recipe.  I had some left-over uncooked fresh tortellini in the refrigerator and used it with this dish.  I just put the cooked pasta on the bottom, added a chicken breast and then spooned some sauce over the whole thing.

Printable Version

3-4 boneless chicken breasts
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1- 15oz can tomatoes
3 Tablespoons mascarpone cheese
Handful of fresh basil,
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Rinse and pat dry the chicken breasts. Brown chicken breasts over high heat in 3 T. olive oil. Cook 2 minutes on each side. Remove chicken breasts- Does not have to be cooked through. Turn heat to medium/low and add onion and garlic.  After two minutes, stir in tomatoes and simmer 10-15 minutes. Stir in mascarpone and basil. Add chicken back to the pan immersing in sauce. Place the chicken in the oven and bake uncovered 20 minutes, flipping 1/2 way through the cooking process.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Chipotle Pork Tacos

This is a recipe from Cooking Light- April 2011. I don't think I have ever put this on my blog and I'm not sure why.  It is a wonderful easy/quick meal. I had two and it was plenty. Jud needed a third so I twisted his arm to just finish it off.  I didn't want to save two little pieces.
The recipe says it makes 8 tacos, but we must have filled our with more meat than 1/3 cup.

Printable Version

1 (1-pound) pork tenderloin, trimmed
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons minced fresh oregano (I used dried because I didn't have any fresh)
1 teaspoon brown sugar
2 teaspoons chopped chipotle chile in adobo sauce-When I open a can, I use what I need and freeze the rest.  Then I just take it out of the freezer and cut off a piece of frozen chipotle in adobo sauce. Works great.
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon salt
Cooking Spray
1 cup thinly sliced shallots
2 teaspoons olive oil
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream
Chopped cilantro (optional)
1. Place pork tenderloin between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; pound to 1/4-inch thickness using a meat mallet or small heavy skillet. Remove plastic wrap. Cut pork into thin strips. Combine pork, lime zest, and next 6 ingredients (through salt).
2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add shallots to pan, sauté for 4 minutes or until tender. Remove shallots and place in a bowl. Add oil to pan.
Add pork; sauté for 4 minutes or until meat is no longer pink. It took more like 5-6 minutes for us.  Add pork to shallots.
3. Warm tortillas according to the package directions. Spoon 1/3 cup pork mixture onto each tortilla, and top each tortilla with 1 1/2 teaspoons sour cream and cilantro. Fold in half.

Potato Soup with Ham and Dill

This is an awesome soup recipe that is adapted from Eastside Café in Austin, Texas. We ate there many years ago and I bought their soup book. This will be repeated, I'm sure.
Printable Version
5 tablespoons butter, margarine, or vegetable oil, divided
2 cups onions, dice --I used a combination of leeks and onions.
1 tablespoon carrots, grated
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
4 cups potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 cups chicken stock
1 cup smoked, lean ham, cubed
2 tablespoons fresh dill, minced
4 cups whipping cream, half and half, or milk
2 tablespoons flour
Salt and pepper
In a large soup pot, saute' onions, over medium heat in 2 tablespoons butter for 10 minutes. Add carrots and garlic. Saute' for an additional 3 minutes. Add potatoes, stock, ham, and dill. Cook over low heat 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
In a separate saucepan, make a roux by melting the other 3 tablespoons butter and whisking in 2 tablespoons flour. Cook roux over low heat, whisking constantly for 3 minutes. Set aside. When the potatoes are tender, add the whipping cream, half and half, or milk. Heat thoroughly, but do not boil. Whisk roux into the soup and continue whisking over medium heat until thickened. Salt and pepper to taste.