Thursday, December 30, 2010

Tex-Mex Chili

Yesterday it was FREEZING here in Pocatello with 50 MPH winds and a wind chill below zero. I wanted to warm up, so I went searching for a good chili recipe. This is what I found. It was EXCELLENT. It also makes a big pot, so I will also be enjoying some for lunch today. It's different because it calls for beef stew cubes (which we had a lot of in our freezer) instead of ground beef. This recipe also calls for slow cooking, but I didn't get it on in time for dinner, so I just simmered it on the stove on low for about 3 hours. Beware, this recipe is rather spicy, and I only used half the cayenne it calls for. Next time I may eliminate the red pepper flakes as well. But, if you like it spicy, here's your fix!

3 pounds beef stew meat
1 Tablespoon Canola (or vegetable) oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 cans (16 ounces each) Kidney Beans, rinsed and drained
3 cans (15 ounces each) Tomato Sauce
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 cup water
1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
3/4 cup salsa verde
1 envelope chili seasoning
2 teaspoons dried minced onion
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Optional garnishes:

Minced Fresh Cilantro
Sour Cream
Shredded Cheddar Cheese

In a large skillet, brown the beef stew meat in oil in batches. Add the garlic to the pan; cook and stir for 1 minute. Transfer to a 6 qt. slow cooker. Stir in remaining ingredients (except garnishes). Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or until meat is tender.

Yield: 12 servings (1-1/3 cups each)

Source: Taste of Home

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Creme Brulee French Toast

We love having guests and friends visit us on the weekends. However, Saturday morning breakfast can be a challenge. You want to maximize visiting time and minimize time in the kitchen while still having a delicious breakfast. This is a great recipe because it is put together the night before and all you do is pop it in the oven when you get up! This french toast bakes in the oven and melts in your mouth.

1/2 cup butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 Tablespoons corn syrup
1 loaf Texas Toast bread (extra-thick slices)
5 eggs
1-1/2 cups half and half cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 recipe syrup butter (below)

In a small saucepan, stir and melt butter, brown sugar, and corn syrup over medium heat until smooth. Pour mixture onto a large, greased jelly roll pan (cookie sheet pan-18x13x1 inch). Spread to cover surface. Place 12 slices Texas toast bread in a single layer to cover pan. Mix together eggs, cream, salt, and vanilla. Spoon mixture over each piece of bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Next morning, bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Remove from pan and serve. If not serving immediately, turn each slice of bread over (this will prevent bread from sticking to bottom of the pan.) Serve with syrup butter. 12 slices french toast.

Syrup Butter:
1-1/2 cups butter
3 cups maple syrup

Melt together and serve over toast.

Source: The Essential Mormon Cookbook.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Extremely Easy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Our friends and neighbors, the Davis family, shared this recipe for these soft, moist, cake-like cookies. They are so incredibly easy and have only 3 ingredients. Also this delicious recipe has no oil, butter or added fat, and no eggs! Thanks Tom and Laura!! (For another delicious cake-like pumpkin cookie recipe see the "pumpkin cookies with warm caramel icing" also on this blog.)

1 box spice cake mix
1 can (15 oz.) Pumpkin Puree
2 Cups Chocolate Chips

Beat cake mix and pumpkin puree together in a large bowl. Stir in Chocolate Chips. Drop by tablespoon-fuls onto very lightly greased cookie sheets and bake for 12-15 minutes or until very slightly browned but still soft. Let cool on cookie sheet for one minute before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

Christmas Snowballs

Hello! It's been a crazy time preparing for Christmas! Here is a slightly different twist on the chex "muddy buddy" recipe. We give it away as gifts every year! Enjoy!

8 cups (1 large box) Cocoa Puffs Cereal
1 bag (10 oz.) Peanut Butter Chips
1/2 cup butter
2 Tbsp. Light Corn Syrup
3 Cups Powdered Sugar-divided

In each of two gallon-size resealable ziploc bags, place 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar. Set aside. Either on the stove over medium heat, or in the microwave, stir and melt together the Peanut Butter Chips, butter and corn syrup until smooth. Pour over Cocoa Puffs in a large bowl and stir gently to coat. Divide the cocoa puff mixture evenly between the two ziploc bags of powdered sugar. Seal the bags and shake gently to coat with sugar. Spread onto waxed paper to cool.