Christmas Crack

Christmas Crack

Christmas Crack

Christmas Crack

1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
about 1 1/2 sleeves of saltines
1 12 oz. pkg. semi-sweet chocolate chips
boil the butter and brown sugar in a sauce pan for 3 minutes. line a jellyroll pan with saltines. pour boiling mixture over saltines and spread out to cover completely. bake the whole thing at 400 degrees for 5 minutes. sprinkle with chocolate chips and allow it to sit for a minute or so while the chips melt. then, spread the chocolate to cover. cool and place in the fridge (or freezer if you can’t wait!) for a few minutes until hardened. crack into small (or large) chunks.

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Egg Nog

it’s time!!!!!!!!!!

Egg Nog*

1 quart whipping cream

1 dozen eggs, separated

2/3 cup sugar

1/2 pint whiskey

1/2 pint spiced rum

separate eggs.  beat egg whites stiff, slowly add sugar to the egg whites; set aside.  beat egg yolks, very slowly, add whiskey and beat until the whiskey has “cooked” the eggs; set aside.  whip cream stiff, add sugar slowly.  fold in all ingredients very slowly.  should be thick constitency.

makes:  4 quarts

*see your doctor before drinking this nog!

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Pumpkin Lattes with Spiced Pumpkin Whipped Cream

Pumpkin Pie Spice Latte

Pumpkin Pie Spice Latte

Pumpkin Lattes with Spiced Pumpkin Whipped Cream

1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

coffee grounds for one pot of coffee

Pumpkin Cream:

1 cup of heavy cream

1/4 cup powdered sugar

1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

1 tsp. vanilla

1/4 cup pumpkin puree (canned)

sprinkle 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice over coffee grounds then brew as usual.  to make the whipped cream, pour one cup of heavy cream into a small bowl. add 1/4 cup powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract to the cream. whip on high speed with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.  mix in spice & vanilla.  measure out 1/4 cup of pumpkin puree. add 1/4 cup canned pumpkin puree to the spiced whipped cream.  beat for a few seconds then remove beaters and gently fold in the pumpkin until combined well. pour coffee into your cup, sweeten as desired, and add some half & half. top with a generous dollop of the spiced pumpkin whipped cream and garnish with a cinnamon stick or extra dash of spice.

enjoy!

makes: 1 pot of coffee

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Filed under Beverages, Breakfasts, Food, phatfoodie, Snacks

Chicken Alouettes

Chicken Alouette

Chicken Alouette

tried this recipe out and it was so easy and so elegant.  now it’s on my list for our annual christmas eve buffet!

Chicken Alouettes

1 pkg. frozen puff pastry (thawed)

4 oz garlic & spice alouette cheese (or any flavored cream cheese will do)

3 skinless chicken breasts cut thinly in half to make 6 pieces

salt & pepper to taste

1 egg white beaten with some water

preheat your oven to 400.  once your pastry is thawed, roll it out on a floured surface.  cut it into six rectangles, then put a dollop some cheese on each piece; place a salted & peppered chicken piece over that and wrap them up like sweet little packages.  when you are wrapping them up, reserve any extra dough to garnish (shape with cookie cutter).  place your cute cut-outs on top and brush everything with an egg white which gives it a nice golden brown and shiny look. bake at 400 for 25 minutes.

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Hearty Beef and Black Bean Chili

Hearty Beef and Black Bean Chili

Hearty Beef and Black Bean Chili

’tis the season!

Hearty Beef Chili

2 1/2 lbs beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes

2 tbs flour

2 tbs oil

4 1/2 tsps chili powder

2 tsps salt

2 tsps ground cumin

2 dried bay leaves

1 1/2 cups beef-flavored broth

1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained

1 cup chopped onion

1 cup green bell pepper, optional

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

3 tbs cornmeal

1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained, rinsed

1 can (4.5 oz) chopped green chiles

Garnish:

freshly grated cheese

sour cream

chopped fresh cilantro

fresh jalapeno, sliced

in a large resealable food-storage plastic bag, place half of the beef and 1 tablespoon of the flour; seal bag and shake to coat. repeat with remaining beef and flour. in 4-quart dutch oven or other large pan , heat oil over medium-high heat. cook beef in oil until brown on all sides; drain, if desired.  transfer meat to crockpot and stir in remaining chili ingredients except cornmeal, beans, and chiles. cook on low about 6-8 hours or on high about 4-5 hours (it’s done when the meat is melt-in-your-mouth tender!).  stir in cornmeal; cook and stir about 1 minute to thicken. add beans and chiles; cook until thoroughly heated. Remove bay leaves. serve chili with garnishes and biscuits or cornbread.  enjoy!

mixitup:  you can sub out the beef for leftover turkey, cubed, added to the crockpot with the other ingredients OR for vegetarians, you can switch out the beef for worthington choplets, or other beef substitute, cubed, which can be purchased at your local grocery; i also use red, orange, yellow and green bell peppers for added color.

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Filed under Food, Main Dish, Meats, phatfoodie, Slow Cooker, Soups

Winter Squash Soup

Winter Squash Soup with Popcorn

Winter Squash Soup with Popcorn

Winter Squash Soup

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1 large onion, finely chopped
4 large garlic cloves, chopped
3 14 1/2-ounce cans low-salt chicken broth
1 peeled butternut squash (about 1 1/2 pounds)*
1 peeled acorn squash (about 1 pound)*
1 peeled sweet dumpling squash (about half pound)*
1 1/4 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
1 1/4 teaspoons minced fresh sage
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 minature bag of popcorn for garnish

melt butter in large pot over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. add broth, all squash and herbs; bring to boil. reduce heat, cover and simmer until squash is very tender, about 20 minutes. working in batches, puree soup in blender, or use immersion blender in soup pot. return to same pot and season with salt and pepper.

note:  bake the squash at 350 for 45 minutes to make for easier peeling.

mixitup: top with popcorn right before serving for an extra added crunch!

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Cranberry Orange Scones

Cranberry Orange Scones

Cranberry Orange Scones

a delicious afternoon snack with a big cuppa chai tea.

Cranberry Orange Scones

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
5 tablespoons sugar, divided
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup fresh cranberries, chopped
1/4 cup chopped pecans (toasted)
1 egg + 1 yolk
1 cup heavy cream + additional for brushing
turbinado sugar for sprinkling

preheat the oven to 400°F. line two sheet trays with parchment paper. pulse the flour, 3 tablespoons of sugar, baking powder, salt, and zest in a food processor a few times to combine. add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles course meal.  transfer to a large bowl. toss the cranberries in the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar. add the sugared cranberries and pecans to the flour mixture, stirring to combine.  in a smaller bowl, whisk together the egg, egg yolk, and cream. add the cream mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.  turn the dough onto a floured surface and sprinkle with additional flour. knead the dough (it will be sticky!) a couple of times with floured hands. (do NOT overwork the dough! the less you handle it, the more tender the scones will be.) divide the dough into two roughly 8-inch circles (the dough will be about 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick).

at this point you can do one of two things:
option 1: with a sharp knife (dipped in flour), cut each dough circle into 8 triangles.
option 2: using a 2-inch biscuit cutter (dipped in flour), stamp out about 7 or 8 rounds into each circle. roll the scraps together and stamp out additional rounds. you should have about 20 scones.

place the scones on the parchment lined trays about one inch apart. brush the tops with a bit of cream and sprinkle with turbinado sugar (if you don’t have turbinado sugar, just use regular granulated sugar).  bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until a pale golden color. let cool on a cooling rack for 10 minutes.

makes: 20 round scones (or 16 triangle ones)

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