Saturday, February 11, 2012

Dipping Marshmallows For Valentines

We found something to do on a gray, snowy day - dipping marshmallows and decorating them for Valentine's Day.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Peanut Butter Dog Treats

The ingredientsMixing the doughRolling out the doughCutting the heartsThe finished treats

Peanut Butter Dog Treats, a set on Flickr.
Made with peanut butter, olive oil, water and wheat flour. 

This dough was really dry. I had to add a little more water and it still had problems sticking well.I did not have heart shaped cookie cutters, so I used a small plastic heart container I purchased at the dollar store in a bag od 12. Now what to do with the other 11!

Baked in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes.


Even Dog's Get A Taste Test!

The IngredientsSeparating the yolk from the whiteAll the ingrediants together before mixingSaving the whites for a breakfast omelateAll mixed upI used a melon baller scoop then flattened the dough
Time to go into the oven

Oatmeal Dog Treats, a set on Flickr.
I whipped up a batch of Homemade Oatmeal Dog Treats for Roxy and Dodger today. I found it at ezinearticles.comHomemade Dog Treats, Easy Treats to Make at Home.

Made with water, wheat flour, baking soda, oatmeal, egg yolk, parsley.  Baked in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.

Easy to do and smells good while cooking!  Make some for your little, or big pooch today.

Friday, January 27, 2012

It's a Celebration

We had a family celebration last night.  Bob accepted the offer of a new job!  He starts on Monday and will be learning all sorts of new things.  Although, I'm sure he'll realize he knows most of already.  Any who, the original dinner plan was hot dogs and hamburgers.  For me, that was not celebration enough.  That meal to me, did not get the family sitting altogether at the table long enough.  Hot dogs and hamburgers are a quick sit down and see you later type of meal in our house.
Bob with a picture of his Grandmother - Yes we have her hanging in the kitchen!
So I headed out to our local grocery store and cruised the meat cases.  My first choice was going to be rib eye staks for all.  Then I saw the oven roasts and found a lovely boneless sirloin spoon roast.  It was perfect, because then I had a reason to make a big batch of mashed potatoes!

I got all my goodies home and looked up recipes online for boneless sirloin spoon roast recipes.  I came across this one at for a Herb Rubbed Sirloin Tip Roast.  

All the players in tonights meal
The rub is a yummy concoction of dry spices added to olive oil and then rubbed all over the meat.  Here's what you need for the rub:
  All The Dry Spices Together
  • 1 1/4 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme   
    After mixing in the olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

 Next - spread all over every inch, nook and cranny of the meat.  Massage it in well.  This type of rub helps to keep the juices and flavor inside the roast while cooking.

Then place it in a preheated 350 degree oven and cook until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees.  The recipe I found suggested leaving it in the oven for 15 minutes, however, I chose to take out of the oven and tent with Reynolds Wrap® Heavy Duty
Aluminum Foil. 

 While the roast was resting, I got the other pieces of the meal together.

The rested roast before carving

Also on the menu was:
  • Mashed Red Skin Potatoes
  • Broccoli in Cheese sauce-Thank you Green Giant!
  • Brussell Sprouts - thank you Birds Eye!
  • A fresh salad
The beverage was Persecco mixed with Cranberry Juice.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

It's All in the Brine

In my house, we like a good pulled pork sangwich (or sandwich for the grammatically correct.) I tried on numerous occasions to do this in the crockpot after smothering the meat with bottled barbecue sauce. It would cook for hours and I was still unable to shred the meat with forks - yeah I could have said, pulled the meat, but.....shred sounds better! Anyhow, I was really craving pulled pork last fall and I was determined to do it right. I searched the internet and came across this recipe - Perfect Pulled Pork – Slow Roasted, Seasoned & Sa-vor-y!!! Compliments of Kevin and Amanda. This recipe gets a hearty 2 thumbs up in my house - and I believe it's all in the brine and the slow roasting.

Brine Solution
1/2 cup salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 qts cold water
3 tbsp dry rub mix
2 bay leaves

Dry Rub
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp ground pepper
1 tbsp paprika
1/2 cup brown sugar

 This is the dry rub when all is mixed together. 

It is very fragrant.

This is my roast after removing from the brine solution and patting dry. 

I used a 4.33 pound boneless.  I like the boneless because I do not have the patience with a bone in.  This does not reduce the cooking time.  I put the pork in at 8 am this morning and took it out of the oven at 6:30 pm.  So it was still 10 and a half hours which is a little more than the 2 hour per pound suggstion.  GET A MEAT THERMOMETOR!  You will be glad you did.

Okay - back to business - this is what your roast should look like after you are done rubbing in the dry rub all over, under, in and out of the meat.   

The image on the left is before going into a 225 degree oven
and the image to the right is out of the oven. 
All yummy and juicy!

This piece of meat literally melted like butta when I started
to shred/pull the pork.  Between the brine and the dry rub, this pulled pork recipe is so full of flavor and pork yumminess.  I will be researching about brining other foods - perhaps a brisket next! 

See how pretty it is all plated?   It was really good.

So, go visit Kevin and Amanda - bookmark this recipe from their site.  You'll be glad you did!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

We Have Fancy Breakfast for Dinner on Thursday!

Tonight we tried out Whole Wheat Lemon Ricotta Pancakes with Blueberry Topping compliments of Honey, What's Cooking.  We also sampled a French Toast Bake from Rach's Blog.  Also on the table were sausages compliments of Brown n' Serve and we couldn't have all this yumminess without a mimosa or two! 

 However.....WE ARE STUFFED!  Both recipes were very easy to do and had minimum prep time.  Apart from the lemons, blueberries and ricotta cheese, I usually have the ingredients on hand.  This makes it easier on the finances. 

By the time I took pictures, the French Toast Bake was already in the oven.  I did not have it sit overnight, it went into the oven after a couple hours and I agree with Rach, the bottom is the best part!  Try it and let me know if you agree.

Here is the set up of the ingredients for the pancakes.  I know it looks like a lot, but the prep time is quick. 

 Look how yummy the blueberries are as they simmer on the stove - the lemon zest really made an entrance.  The aroma coming from that pan was heavenly.

When cooking the pancakes on the griddle, don't expect to wait for all the air holes to show up on top before flipping them.  This is a dense, yet fluffy batter and you just need to keep an eye on them.

And here they are on the flip side. 

We give these two recipes a hearty thumbs up.  However, we would not do the two paired together again. 

Leftovers you ask?  Of course there are!  Would you like to come for breakfast?

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Oven Fried Pickles and French Dip Crescents - 2 Thumbs Up

Tonight Nikki was the Taste Test Kitchen Chef for dinner and the menu she developed is Oven Fried Pickles from and French Dip Crescents with Au Jus from Mama Loves Food!  We have been using Pinterest to find great things on the internet and food, of course, is among those great things.

First up are the ingredients for the oven fried pickles:
The red stuff in the plastic bag is Cajun Seasoning - we couldn't find a prepared Cajun Seasoning, so Nikki whipped some up from this website - 
Next up are the ingredients for the French Dip Crescents.  These were really easy to do.  Just unroll each crescent triangle and put a piece of roast beef and a piece of cheese.  We opted out of the horse radish, just cuz we don't do horse radish.
Here's what they looked like out of the oven:
And a picture of the French Dip Crescent  with the oven fried pickles.
Overall the taste test tonight was a success.