Friday, July 15, 2011

Angelic Deviled Eggs

6 eggs
1/4 c hummus
ground black pepper
1/2 tsp yellow mustard
2 TBSP fresh chives, scallions, or dill- finely chopped, divided

Put eggs in a saucepan (that has a lid) and cover with 2" of water. Add a drop or two of oil so that the shells peel easily. Bring to a boil uncovered, turn off heat, and let stand with cover on for 15 minutes. Drain boiling water and fill pan with ice/water to stop the cooking process. Let stand at least 15 minutes to cool.

Peel eggs, cut in half lengthwise and remove the yolks. Save 3 of the yolks for another use, or discard. Mash remaining 3 yolks with the hummus, mustard, pepper and 1 TBSP herbs. Put yolk mixture into a zippered quart freezer bag and squeeze any air out of the bag sealing tightly. Cut the one of the bottom corners off the bag, about 1/8" in. Use the bag to squeeze the yolk mixture into the egg cavities.* Sprinkle with the remaining TBSP of herbs.

*If the herbs prevent the yolk from coming out smoothly, cut the hole a little bigger at a time until it flows smoothly.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Cheesy Orzos

1/2 box Orzo
1 small onion, chopped
1 c chopped broccoli
1 can condensed cheese soup
1/2 c sour cream
1/2 c milk
1 c shredded cheddar

Cook orzo to package direction, but reducing the cook time by 2 minutes. Reserve 1 cup starchy cooking liquid and drain pasta. Set aside.

Spray a medium saucepan with cooking spray and saute the onion until soft and translucent. Add broccoli and cook another 2-3 minutes.

Add soup, sour cream, and milk and whisk until smooth. Stir in cooked orzo and cheese until well blended, add a little of the reserved liquid if needed.

To make this a one dish dinner, add chopped cooked chicken breast or ham.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

10 Minute Lemon Seared Tilapia

4 tilapia fillets (thawed)
cooking spray
seasoned salt or MDP's seasoning
2 lemons

Heat a skillet on high heat until scorching hot. Spray one side of the fish with cooking spray and sprinkle with seasoning. Add fish to the pan seasoning side down, and spray the plain side with cooking spray and season.

Cook about 3-4 minutes on each side until golden brown. Squeeze lemons into pan and cook an addition 1-2 minutes until juice is absorbed.

Voila! Dinner in 10. If you can make your sides that fast ;)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Roasted Corn and Veggies

1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 bell pepper, chopped into 1/2" chunks
1 seeded jalapeno,  finely chopped
1 onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped
1 large tomato, diced
1 can corn, drained
1/4 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
pinch cayenne pepper
pinch red pepper flakes

In a glass casserole dish (about 8X8"), add 1/2 TBSP oil, bell pepper, onions, and garlic. Stir to coat and place under broiler on high.

In a bowl, mix remaining oil, tomatoes, corn, jalapeno and seasonings. Spread on a small baking sheet and put under broiler on high.

Roast both pans of veggies until they are charred spots all over. Roast 10-15 minutes, stirring every 5. Combine corn mixture into glass pan with bells and onions. Stir well before serving.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Chili Garlic Roasted Potatoes

6 medium potatoes, washed and cut into 1" chunks
1/2 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 TBSP olive oil
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp ground cumin
salt and pepper

Heat oven to 550 degrees.

Toss potatoes with oil and seasonings, garlic and onions. Spread on a non-stick baking sheet.

Roast 10-15 minutes per side, until the outsides are golden and the insides soft. Use a firm metal spatula to lift and turn halfway through.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Quick Coconut Rice Pudding

This is a great way to use up some leftover white rice, especially the Chinese takeout kind.

1 box (large-6 serving) vanilla pudding
3 c. milk
1 c. cooked white rice
1 c. shredded coconut (sweetened)
1/4 tsp cinnamon

In a saucepan, bring milk. cinnamon, and pudding mix to a full rolling boil over medium heat, constantly stirring.

Toast coconut on a small baking sheet in a toaster or conventional oven. Watch closely that it doesn't burn. Reserve 1/4 c. of coconut, and mix remainder into pudding with the rice. Stir until well combined, and pour into a glass bowl. Top with remaining coconut and let set in the fridge at least 30 minutes. May be served warm or cold.

Saturday, July 9, 2011


I used to make this recipe all the time about 10 years ago
forgot about it until last week when we were making snacks for a gathering. Its perfect for summer and can be served from a bowl, lettuce leaf, or out of a hollowed tomato.

1/2 c. cooked, crumbled bacon (about 6 slices)
1 c. light sour cream
1 c. light mayo
1 c. chopped tomatoes
1 clove garlic, grated finely
1/2 c. shredded lettuce

Cook bacon and spread on a paper towel to absorb extra grease. Save 1 TBSP to garnish dip. Combine remaining bacon with sour cream, mayo, tomatoes, and garlic. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour.

Serve in a bowl lined with lettuce leaf or a hollowed tomato and stop with shredded lettuce and bacon. Serve with romaine chunks (I use the bottom where its firm and cut into 1" pieces), cherry tomatoes, or butter crackers.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

2 1/4 c white flour
1 tsp salt
4 tsp baking powder
5 TBSP unsalted butter
1 c buttermilk
1/2 TBSP honey

Add flour, salt, and baking powder to a medium bowl. Stir to combine. Cut butter into small pieces and add to bowl. Use a fork (and/or your fingers if needed) to mash the butter into the flour until the dough forms pea-sized crumbles.

Mix milk and honey in a measuring cup. Add milk to flour mixture and lightly knead, just until moistened. Form a ball and put in the freezer for 10 minutes to chill.

Heat oven to 450 degrees. On a floured cutting board, lightly roll dough out into a rectangle about 1/2" thick, and 6"x4". Cut once the long way, and twice the short way to make 6 even squares or use a biscuit or cookie cutter to cut into shapes. Place on a baking sheet lightly sprayed with cooking spray and bake 10-12 minutes until golden.

Who says a girl from the North can't make a good biscuit? These are light, flaky, and full of sweet buttery goodness.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Mockarita Cupcakes

What is better for a party than little cupcakes that look like  cocktails. You can make them in cupcake liners for easier eating and omit the sugar rimmed glasses, or you can go all out and make them spoon-worthy. The best part is, since they aren't spiked with anything, everyone can enjoy.

1 box white cake mix
Margarita mix (to replace the water, see box for amount)
eggs (see box for amount)
oil (see box for amount)
5 drops green food coloring

1 stick unsalted butter, softened at room temp
1 8 oz package cream cheese, softened at room temp
2 limes, zested
additional lime juice if needed to yield 1/4 c total
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 bag powdered sugar (about 6-7 cups)
5-10 drops green food coloring

Sadly, I forgot to sugar my rims
1 can/jar key lime pie filling
24 pieces fruit slice candy
coarse sugar
kosher/sea salt (coarse)
24 small disposable 8 oz clear tumblers
12 straws, cut in half

Make cake batter according to package directions, substituting the margarita mix for water, and adding food coloring before mixing. If possible use a light, shiny metal pan to bake the cupcakes (the darker the pan, the more the cake will be brown). Let cool completely.

In a mixer bowl, add butter, cream cheese, lime zest, 1/4 cup lime juice, food coloring and vanilla extract. Whip until fluffy and well blended. Add sugar 2 cups at a time whipping into frosting frosting and cleaning the edges of the bowl with a scraped. Continue adding sugar until frosting forms stiff peaks.

If you are going all the way with the cup cakes, set up 2 bowls larger than the rims of the cups. Add lime juice to one, and coarse sugar to the other. Make sugar rims on the glasses by dipping the cups in the juice and then sugar.

Divide the pie filling among the sugar-rimmed cups. Place a cupcake in each cup over the filling, and top with a generous amount of frosting. Place a fruit slice candy on each, stick a straw in, and lightly sprinkle the tops with coarse sugar and a pinch of kosher or sea salt.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Jello Shots

Nothing says 3rd of July like a big party and some cool, refreshing spiked jello in a teeny plastic cup (if you are from Pawtucket, you know what I mean). These are great for a large crowd, if you want to share.The quality of what spirit you use will definitely make a difference, but even the cheapest of plastic bottle vodkas will do. Here are some of my favorite combos:

McLean 3rd of July 2009

Tropical, Pineapple, or Strawberry Banana w/ Coconut Rum
Grape, Cranberry, Watermelon, Fruit Punch w/ Vodka
Cherry, Orange w/ Vanilla Vodka
Black Cherry w/ Chocolate Liqueur (like Creme de Cacao, Godiva, Etc)
Berry Blue or Blue Raspberry w/ Raspberry Vodka

Mix jello with 1 cup boiling water. Stir 1-2 minutes until fully dissolved and add 1 cup cold spirit. Stir another minute. Pour into 1 oz disposable cups and chill 4 hours to set. 1 regular size packet of jello makes about 18-20 shots.

Whats your favorite combo??