Friday, January 29, 2010

Baked Honey Mustard Chicken

This is an adaptation of an older recipe which I threw together from memory.

1-2 lbs chicken pieces
1/4 c honey
1/4 c dijon mustard
1 tsp basil
1 tsp parika
1/2 tsp each salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Mix all ingredients except chicken. Place chicken skin-side down, and pour half of mixture over chicken. Bake, covered for 45 minutes.

Flip chicken and brush with remaining sauce. Bake uncovered for 30-45 minutes or until done.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Easy Scalloped Potatoes

This recipe was adapted from one found on I snazzed it up a bit. Since I was running late for work, I neglected to take pictures.

3-4 lbs russet and red potatoes
1 3/4 c 2% milk
1.5 - 2 c shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 c flour
salt and pepper
2 tbs butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray baking pan with cooking spray. I used 8x8" square pyrex.

Slice potatoes into even slices, about 1/4th of an inch. Overlap potatoes in alternating colors.

Dust with flour, salt, and pepper each layer. (I fit about 4 layers in my pan).

Dot with butter. Heat ("scald") milk and pour over potatoes.

Bake, covered for 45 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

Uncover and sprinkle with cheese. Cook for 15-20 or until cheese is golden brown.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Mustard-Sugar Glazed Ham

I found this recipe somewhere online in 2008 and prepared it for Easter. It was a big hit, so when I came down with a ham craving this weekend, I dug it out. Cloves were ridiculously expensive, so I omitted them entirely. Super yummy result. Pictures may be added later.

6-8 lb smoked, cured bone-in ham.
3/4 c brown sugar
1/4 c dijon mustard
2 tbs cider vinegar

If desired, score the ham with criss-cross hatches and stud with cloves.

Cook covered at 350 degrees for 1.5 hours. Meanwhile, whisk remaining ingredients together.

Remove cover and pour glaze over ham. Bake for another 20-30 minutes until ham is heated through.

Serves 8+

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Jam-filled Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

This recipe appeared in the November 2009 BBC GoodFood. I lightened it a bit, left out certain add-ins, and gave them the same treatment my vanilla cupcakes received in the previous post. You must have an electric food scale for this one.

140g light muscovado sugar (brown sugar)
100g self-raising flour
50g cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs, 2 egg whites
125 ml vegetable oil
3 tbs milk

1/4 c cherry or raspberry preserves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare muffin pan by spraying with cooking spray or using muffin cups.

Whisk together dry and wet ingredients separately. Then stir the two together.

Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a tooth pick comes out clean.

Cool completely on a wire rack.


Using a paring knife, cut a 1x1" wedge out of each cupcake. Fill with 1 tsp preserves and then replace removed cake. Frost, if desired.

Chocolate Frosting
1/2 c butter, softened
1 c powdered sugar
1/4 c cocoa powder
2 tbs milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt

Combine sugar, cocoa and salt. Set aside.

In mixing bowl, beat butter until light and fluffy.

Gradually add in sugar/cocoa mixture and milk mixture.

Whip until light and fluffy.

This icing will cover about 2 dozen cupcakes.

Makes 10-12.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Jam-Filled Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

This recipe appeared in Everyday Food. I lightened it a bit (but not much).

1/2 c butter, softened
1.5 c all purpose flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 c granulated sugar
1 egg, 2 egg whites room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 c milk
1/4 c preserves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare muffin pan by spraying or using cupcake papers.

Mix flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and vanilla.

With mixer on low, beat in flour mixture alternating with milk.

Pour batter into prepared pan. (This recipe is supposed to yield 12 cupcakes, but I only got 11).

Bake for 20 minutes until a tooth pick comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack.


Once cool, use a paring knife to cut a 1x1" crater out of the muffin. Fill hole with 1 tsp preserves and replace with top. Frost, if desired.

Chocolate Frosting
1/2 c butter, softened
1 c powdered sugar
1/4 c cocoa powder
2 tbs milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt

Combine sugar, cocoa and salt. Set aside.

In mixing bowl, beat butter until light and fluffy.

Gradually add in sugar/cocoa mixture and milk mixture.

Whip until light and fluffy.

This icing will cover about 2 dozen cupcakes.

Makes 10-12.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Carrot Oatmeal Raisin muffins

This recipe appeared in the most recent Every Day Food and is entitled "healthy morning muffins." I feared they would be dry because there's so little fat, but they're moist and delicious. I hate nutmeg and subbed cinnamon. I also used 2 bananas instead of one for extra moistness.


1.25 c all-purpose flour
1/2 brown sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 c uncooked oatmeal
1/2 c raisins
3 tbs olive oil
1 egg
1/3 c skim milk
4 medium carrots, shredded
2 medium, ripe bananas

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare muffin pan by spraying with cooking spray or lining with muffin cups.

In a large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt, whisking to make sure there are no lumps.

Add oil, egg, milk, carrots, and banana. Whisk until well-blended.

Stir in oatmeal and raisins.

Pour into muffin pan, about 1/4 c per muffin.

Bake 20-25 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.

Makes 12.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Quinoa with Apples, Carrots and Onions

Quinoa is a good source of both fiber and protein. While I usually serve it as my carby side dish, I've been known to eat a cup or so as a meal when I'm too lazy to cook. I buy it out of the bulk bins at Whole Foods or at Trader Joe's.


1 c uncooked quinoa
3/4 c onion, chopped
3/4 c carrot, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 c chicken broth
1.5 c granny apple, finely chopped
1/2 tsp each salt, pepper, cinnamon
Olive oil

Saute onion and carrots in olive oil until tender and the carrots are beginning to brown, about 5-7 minutes.

Add garlic and cook for one minute. Add quinoa and give the mixture a good stir. (I'm not sure whether you can "toast" quinoa, but oh well).

Add broth, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Cook on low, covered, for 20 minutes until most, if not all, of the liquid is absorbed. (Don't be alarmed by the little squigglies that look like worms. That's normal ;)

Meanwhile, saute the apples in a little olive oil until tender, about 7 minutes.

Fluff quinoa with a fork and mix in apples and cinnamon. Adjust seasonings if necessary.

Serves 4-6.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Mock Beef Stroganoff

A friend taught me this recipe in law school when I was just getting into cooking. It's definitely a recipe from our parents' generation, but might be appropriate for these leaner times. It whips up quickly in about 30 minutes.


1 lb ground beef (85/15)
1 lb sliced mushrooms (button or baby bellas)
2 c chopped onions (yellow or sweet)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
12 oz sour cream
1 lb whole wheat pasta.

Put 4 quarts of water on to boil.

Brown ground beef in olive oil with a little salt and pepper. Drain beef and set aside.

Add a little more olive oil to the pan, saute chopped onions and mushrooms until onions have softened and mushrooms have browned. Add garlic and cook for another minute. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Add pasta to boiling water and cook for 10 minutes or according to the package directions for al dents.

Return beef to pan, sprinkle with garlic powder. Turn heat to medium and stir in sour cream and Worcestershire. Once sour cream has melted, reduce heat to low and simmer until pasta is done.

Drain pasta and combine meat sauce mixture. Adjust salt and pepper, as needed.


Serves 6-8.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Honey Whole Wheat Bread with Flax Seed

This recipe was closely adapted from this one posted by CookingMommaofThree at The primary change I made was to omit the wheat germ since I didn't have any. Otherwise, I stayed true to her awesome recipe.

Photobucket Photobucket
This recipe makes 3 loaves

1 c. warm water (about 110 degrees)
4 1/2 t. yeast
1 T. + 1/3 c honey
1/4 c. butter
1 1/2 T. salt
2 c. skim milk
5 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c. ground flax seed
1/2 c all purpose flour (or wheat germ)
1 1/2 bread flour (up to 3 c if necessary)

1) In bowl of a stand mixer, combine water, yeast and 1 T. honey. Set aside.

2) In a microwave safe bowl, combine remaining 1/3 c honey, butter, and salt. Heat until butter is completely melted, about 30 seconds - 1 minute. Stir in milk. Add the milk mixture to yeast mixture.

3) Using the paddle attachment, add 1 c flour at a time until well mixed. Add ground flax see and last 1/2 c of flour or wheat germ.

4) Unless you have an extra-large stand mixer (more than 5 quarts), set half of the dough aside for the kneading step. Change to dough hook.

5) Add 1/2 c bread flour at a time until dough no longer sticks to bottom of bowl. (I think I only added about 1.5 c total to all my dough). Knead 8 minutes. Repeat with any dough that was set aside. Knead both halves of dough together.

6) Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray. Turn dough to coat. Cover with a clean dish towel and place in a warm place until doubled in size. (About an hour for me).

7) Punch down dough and divide until three equal pieces. Shape into loaves and place into bread pans for second rise. (I only have two loaf pans, so one was left free-form as will be shown below).

8) Cover with dish towel and let rise in a warm place until "doubled" or about an inch rise over your loaf pan.

9) Bake in 350 degrees oven for 35 minutes until golden brown.

10) Remove from oven and let cool on wire racks for 10 to 15 min before removing from loaf pans to cool completely before slicing.

Photobucket Photobucket

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Slowcooker Kalua Pig

This is a real easy way to make Kalua pig. As mentioned in the previous post, I had never tried brussels sprouts before, so I steamed them in the microwave and tossed with butter and pepper. Not bad at all.


Kalua Pig
3-4 lb pork shoulder ("pork butt")
1-2 T liquid smoke
2-3 T Hawaiian sea salt (sub kosher salt)

Trim excess fat from pork and place in base of slowcooker. If desired, place a rack in first, so some of the fat drips away. Add liquid smoke. Cook on low for 8-10 hours.

Remove from slowcooker, reserving liquid. Shred meat using two forks and toss with salt, tasting periodically as not to over salt.

Strain liquid from bottom of the pot. Chill for a bit and then scoop away the fat.

Add some liquid to pork and stir well. (A moist kalua pig will mix with rice beautifully without the need for soy sauce.) Serve with rice.

Other uses: Instead of salting, shredded meat can be mixed with your favorite bbq sauce. Cook for about 20 minutes on high so that the sauce cooks in. Serve on buns.

Brussels Sprouts
1/2 c brussels sprout
1 tb butter or butter substitute
1/4 tsp ground pepper

Steam sprouts in the microwave 2-3 minutes. No liquid is required if using special steam bag. Toss with butter and sprinkle with pepper.

I had my first brussel sprout today! Somehow they never looked
appealing and have such a bad rap, that I'd never dared to try them.
Impulse-shopping at Trade Joe's put an end to that. Well, all I did
was steam them and toss with a little butter and pepper. Not bad at
all. I could so make these taste good with, I don't know, a recipe?
Can't wait to try them again. Pictures of the first go to come.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Oven-baked chicken

Growing up, we called this "Shake-a-shake-a Chicken." This was before I had ever even seen a commercial for "Shake and Bake." It was a weekend favorite of our and was usually accompanied by mashed potatoes. With great chagrin I learned as an adult that it came from the back of a Bisquick box. Nonetheless, it is still a super easy way to get "fried" chicken with a little less frying. Since I don't keep Bisquick in the house, I used a simple substitute.

1 c flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbs melted butter
1.5 tsp baking powder
(or 1 c Bisquick)
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 heaping tsp paprika
2 lbs chicken pieces (I used thighs)
1/4 c butter

Preheat oven to 400. Place butter in 9x13" pan and melt. Remove pan when butter is melted so it does not burn.

Mix all ingredients in a ziploc bag. Toss chicken in flour mixture.

Place chicken, skin-side down in preheated pan. Bake for 30 minutes at 425 and flip.

Continue cooking, uncovered for about 30 more minutes until chicken is golden brown and cooked through.

Serves 4.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Sweet and Savory Short Ribs

This recipe was inspired by one found in Beth Hensperger's Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Recipes for Entertaining, but I left out both the named ingredients, so it was really just a savory, mustardy, vinegar bbq sauce. Served with garlic-parmesan mashed potatoes which were very yummy.
2 lb short ribs
1/4 c Dijon mustard
2 Tbs beef broth
2 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs cider vinegar
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3 Tbs brown sugar
1 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp (or less) cayenne pepper
2 medium onions, chopped
salt and pepper
olive oil

Combine mustard through cayenne pepper with a whisk. Pour into bottom of the slow cooker. Salt and pepper short ribs liberally. Brown in a olive oil on both sides.

Place short ribs in sauce, arranging so these are submerged. Sprinkle onions on top.

Cook for 1 hour on high and then 6-7 on low until meat is tender.

Serves 4.