Sunday, June 29, 2014

Cacio e Pepe

Allow me to preface this by saying a couple things:
1. I am really, really sorry for neglecting the blog this week.  My Hubbs was sick, I wasn't feeling too hot, and my schedule has been completely off.  I keep having to remind myself that today is not Monday.
2. My Hubbs really didn't like this pasta dish.  I loved it, but it wasn't really his cup of tea.

According to Google, "Cacio e Pepe" is a Roman dish, and means "cheese and pepper" in several central Italian languages.

It's called this because the recipe pretty much only calls for cheese and black pepper, well and butter.  I did, however, add some crushed red pepper flakes to the mix too. What can I say, I like it hot.

You'll need:
3 Tablespoons of butter (unsalted)
1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

You'll also need some noodles, cooked.  I used about 8oz, broken in half.

Once the noodles are cooked, put in the butter and let it melt.

Then add in everything else.

And mix it up.

I served it with garlic chicken, which I'll post the recipe for tomorrow.


I know this was a super short and simple recipe.  And it's kind of a cop out since I've been got for 5 days.  So I'm going to share with you one of my favorite "life/kitchen hacks". 

I love popcorn.  No butter.  Just salt and pepper.  Mmm...  But I hate using those microwave bags.  And I'm impatient and don't want to stand at the stove to pop it.  So, unless I get one of those tiny popcorn poppers, I like to use this method:

NOTE: Use oven mitts to take the bowl out of the microwave, it WILL BE VERY HOT.  Don't say I didn't warn you.

Add your popcorn kernels to your bowl.

Place in the microwave with a plate on top.  Cook for 6-7 minutes.

And you've got a bowl of popcorn.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread

I made this last week because I had some bananas that were going to go bad and I'm trying not to be wasteful.  Which in our current culture can be kinda hard.  

1/3 cup of melted butter
3/4 cup of sugar
1 beaten egg
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup of AP flour
1 tsp of vanilla

You'll also need 3 mashed bananas.

Add the banana, butter, sugar, egg, and vanilla together.

Add the baking soda.

Add the flour.

Add half of the batter to a greased loaf pan.

Now to make the cinnamon swirl.
1/3 cup of sugar
1 Tbsp cinnamon

Mix these together. 
And follow these steps:
1. Add half on top of the first layer.
2. Add the rest of the batter.
3. Add the rest of the cinnamon mixture.

Bake for 60 minutes at 350.

Slice and enjoy warm with butter.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Chicken and Dumpling Casserole

I'm going to go ahead and apologize for the quality of some of this photos.  The food was steaming and fogging up my camera.

First, you're going to boil your chicken (at least 3 breasts) and then cut them into chunks.

Then you're going to need:
1 diced onion
1 cup of frozen peas
1 cup sliced carrots
3 cups of low sodium chicken broth
3 tablespoons of oil
3 tablespoons of flour

Cook the carrots and onions in oil until soft.

Add the flour and just enough broth to make it smooth.

Add some salt and pepper, and the chicken, and allow to bubble away until slightly thickened.

Now to make the dumplings:
1 cup of flour
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 egg
1/3 cup of 1% milk

Mix it all together.

Add the chicken mixture to a glass baking dish.

Drop the dough mixture over the top.

Bake uncovered for 20 minutes at 400 degrees.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Bang Bang Chicken

I was going to publish my Cinnamon Banana Bread recipe today but after making diner last night.  I decided that it was much more delicious and needed to be published sooner. :)

But first, I need to talk about something.

This is a Potato Express bag.  I was skeptical.  You've probably seen advertisements for this on TV.  Like most things that are advertised on infomercials, I didn't think this would work.  But it does.  And I really couldn't be more pleased.

Okay, now onto the chicken.

First, we're gonna make the sauce.
1/4 cup of mayo (I used Kraft with olive oil)
1 tablespoon of siracha
2 tablespoons of honey
2 tablespoons of hot sauce (I used Louisiana)

Add it all to a bowl and whisk it all up.

Once it's all mixed up, set it off to the side.

You'll need:
1 cup of panko
1 cup of buttermilk
1/2 cup of oil
1/4 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon of black pepper
1 tablespoon of hot sauce
1 egg
3/4 cup of flour
1/2 cup of cornstarch

Add everything but the oil and Panko to a mixing bowl.

Whisk it until smooth.

Heat the oil up in a skillet.

Okay, now you're going to take three chicken breasts and cut them into cubes.  Dip first in the liquid and then in the Panko.

Fry the chicken until golden brown.

I served them with potatoes I cooked in my Potato Express bag with the sauce on the side.  I do think that next time I'll add a little more heat to it because it wasn't nearly hot enough for our tastes.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Parmesan Garlic Chicken

This is what we had for supper last night. This meal will be in two parts because I made Creamy Garlic Pasta to go with it.  :)  It's delicious. Mmm...

Preheat your oven to 425 first.  

You're going to need:
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon of pepper
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 cup of oil
1/4 cup of grated Parmesan
1/4 cup of bread crumbs (or Panko)
1 tablespoon of Italian seasoning (I used 1/2 teaspoon of rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon oregano, 2 teaspoons of parsley)
1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder

Add the minced garlic and the oil together, heat it up in the microwave for about 30 seconds

Add everything else to another bowl.

Dip the chicken in the oil, and then in the cheese crumb mixture.

Bake for about 25 minutes.

Super duper simple.  But super delicious.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Mixed Berry and Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

I woke up yesterday with a craving for muffins.  I've got muffin mixes but I'm pretty sure they're out of date and I just don't like those as much as fresh homemade muffins.  I also knew that I had raspberries and blueberries in the fridge that were going to go bad before I ate them.  So, I decided to make muffins.

But first.  How cute is she?!  That's my baby right there.  I love all my dogs but Paka is my little bitty, teeny weeny baby. 

Okay, now back to the muffins.  I was a little torn about whether to save these in my dessert or bread files.  But I went with bread. Because it makes me feel better about eating one for breakfast.  There are two sets of ingredients.  Dry and wet.  And they each get mixed separately.

1 cup of milk (I use 1%)
2 teaspoons of lemon juice (I used concentrated because I had no fresh lemons)
1/2 cup of vegetable oil
1 egg

2 cups of AP flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup of sugar

Mix the wet in the bowl of your stand mixer and the dry in a bowl.

You'll also need 1/3 cup of chocolate chips for this next step.

Mix the wet, the dry, and the chips together.

Just enough to get them all combined. Lumps are okay.

Now you'll need about two cups of mixed berries (I used blueberries and raspberries).

Mix them in but not enough to make the batter change colors.  You don't want to over mix.

I used an ice cream scoop to portion them out into paper cups.

Bake at around 350-375 depending on your oven for 20-25 minutes until the tops are golden brown.  This made 19 muffins.