Sunday, May 19, 2013

What's Cooking

Chicken Broccoli Cheese Bake



 Saute cubed skinless chicken breast and 1/2 TBSP (more to taste) minced garlic in olive oil. You can also add whatever seasonings you like at this time. Saute for 10 mins or so, add 2 TBSP of flour and stir. Add one cup of water or chicken broth (I used water) place frozen or fresh broccoli and butter on top and let the steam start to cook the broccoli and melt the butter.




Chicken, Minced Garlic, Flour and Salt n Pepper Sauteing in Olive Oil


Add Water or Broth, place Broccoli and Butter on Top and Steam


 Mix 2 Cups of cream (any of your choice) with 2 cups of Sour Cream in large measuring cup. Add 2 Cups of Shredded cheese (any kind of your choice) and mix well together. 

Pour Cream and Cheese mixture over the top of chicken and broccoli. You can add more cheese or bread crumbs on top. (I did not)
*If your using an oven safe skillet as I did (Cast Iron) you can place the skillet into the oven at 350 for approx 30 mins or until top is brown and bubbly.

NOTE: If your not using an oven safe skillet, you must transfer the chicken and broccoli to an oven safe casserole dish before adding the cream and cheese mixture.
 You can add Sun Dried Tomatoes, Summer Squash or any Vegetable you want to change it up a bit.

This smelled Frickin Fantastic while baking in the oven...!  The Taste?  Even more Frickin Fantastic! 

Friday, May 17, 2013

Sweet Smells Of Spring....



Today after doing errands that had been put down on the bottom of the priority list, I made a stop by Aunt Margie's home to see her Lilac Bushes in bloom.  Last Spring for her birthday, her request was to have a long row of Dwarf Lilac Bushes planted along the boarder of the lawn in front of her home, where she could look out her kitchen window and see them when they were in full bloom.  The first bush was gifted to her from my Son for her Birthday and then followed in a perfect straight line of 12 more.  When the bushes were planted last year, they were nothing more than a few long straggly thin branches.  The blooming Lilac bushes one year later are more than doubled in size and abundantly full of blooming flowers.  Unfortunately, Aunt Margie did not have a chance to see the Lilac's bloom before she passed.  But, I do believe she is smiling with much approval from above and that her hand has touched them.  

I snipped a few bunches before leaving, one from my Son's he had gifted and some from another to bring a little of Aunt Margie home with me.  The sweet smell of these Lilac's is absolutely amazing!  I'm hoping they last for a while, because I really like having Aunt Margie around :)






Saturday, May 11, 2013

Personalized Glasses

I found these awesome glasses with one word inscriptions on them, describing how Fabulous us Ladies are!
I took a black glass permanent marker and wrote individual names on the base of the glass.  The marker worked great!  I suggest you get a marker that needs to be cured in the oven to ensure the markings are permanent and will not rub of. 

I traced the bottom of the base and drew a line in the middle.  I then downloaded to my computer and opened in a photo site.  I use Pain.net for most of my work.  I found the font I wanted to use and made templates for each name.  After each template was created I printed them and cut out.  I taped the template on the bottom of each glass and traced the name.  Let the ink dry for at least 8 hours before curing in the oven.  You cure for 45 mins in a cold oven, do not pre heat. Set oven at 375.  Open oven door and turn off oven, let glasses cool down in oven before removing.....


Templates taped to bottom of glass




Completion of tracing.

I gifted these glasses to my cousins at our most recent gathering...I also had cloth bags made for each glass and purchased round cardboard containers which the glasses fit perfect in for storage and easy carry.  I will post pictures of the entire package on another post.  I still have some to gift and did not want to show the final package and spoil the surprise...

My cousins with their personal glasses...they LOVED them!



Strawberry Napoleans


Strawberry Napoleans







I made this very easy and quick dessert for my monthly gathering with my gal pal cousins...

Recipe

One Package of Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry (Frozen)
One large package of Instant Vanilla Pudding
One Cup of Cold Milk
One cup of Whipping Cream
Fresh Strawberries
Chocolate Morsels or One Block of your favorite (I used Semi-Sweet)

Directions

Thaw one of the two puff pastries per directions on box.  Thaw both if you want to double the recipe.
Bake according to directions on box.

While pastry is baking and cooling, mix the Vanilla Pudding with the one cup of milk and set aside or place in refrigerator if your not planning to prepare immediately. Whip one cup of Heavy Cream (I mixed two cups at one time for extra for the topping and separated after it was whipped)  Take one cup of whipping cream and fold into the Vanilla Pudding. 

I then finished preparing the remainder of the Whipping Cream for the Topping by adding some Pure Vanilla.  You can also add a little sugar to taste. (I did not add sugar)

Cut each of the three pastries into thirds.  Slice each piece in half and add a heaping Tablespoon of the Vanilla Cream on top, place other half of pastry on top of Vanilla Cream. 

Top with your fresh Whipping Cream or your favorite choice of whipped topping.  Add Fresh strawberries on top of cream.

Melt your chocolate in a micro wave prof small dish and drizzle on top of Pastry..
(You can add a very small amount of a solid shortening to the chocolate if the consistency is too thick, I did not) if you add a shortening, make sure you mix the shortening well into the chocolate.

Refrigerate  until serving..
Enjoy


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Lemon Muffins with Lemon Glaze


 I made these Lemon Muffins with fresh lemons I purchased at Market.




Recipe

 Muffins
1 Box of Yellow Cake Mix
1 cup of Sour Cream
3 eggs
1 Cup of Cold Water
1/4 Cup of Oil
Lemon Juice from two lemons
Rind from two lemons

Mix the eggs with the water and oil.  Gradually add the cake mix, mixing very gently.  Add the sour cream and lemon juice and rind, mix gently.  You do not want to over mix a muffin.....a few lumps may still be present in the mix.
Grease a muffin pan generously, bake at temp and time according to cake mix. *You can bake in paper cups if you so desire.  I have found the muffin sticks to paper, so I bake without the paper cups and place in jumbo papers to glaze and serve. 

Glaze
Lemon juice from one lemon
Rind from one lemon
Powdered Sugar

Place lemon juice and rind in small bowl, gently add powered sugar to make a glaze consistency.  With a spoon, drizzle over warm muffins.  Let muffins cool and glaze set before serving....unless your like me and can't wait.  They are delicious warm ;)


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