Thursday, August 26, 2010

Purple Cow Frozen Yogurt

Happy Birthday to me! I decided to share this delicious treat in celebration of my birthday. It is one of the best things I have made in my ice cream maker. My KA mixer ice cream attachment was a gift from mom for my birthday last year. It has certainly been used this year! The bowl just lives in our freezer, ready to make ice cream whenever we need it to. I love Greek yogurt, so it is no surprise that I enjoy it in this fro yo. There are many flavor combinations in my head that I can make with this frozen yogurt base, and I hope to do some experimenting soon. This recipe was taken from Cook Like A Champion.

You will need:
*3 cups 2% Greek yogurt (the nonfat kind will not work well, trust me!)
*1 teaspoon vanilla extract
*2/3 cup, plus 1 tablespoon sugar
*2 cups blackberries
*semi sweet chocolate chips
*white chocolate chips

1. Combine yogurt, sugar and vanilla and stir until sugar is disolved. Cover and refrigerate for one hour.

2. Wash and dry blackberries and puree in a food processor. Strain the blackberries to separate the liquid from the seeds. Then stir in one tablespoon of sugar. Cover and refrigerate one hour.

3. After at least an hour, add blackberry puree to yogurt mixture and stir until combined.

4. Freeze in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer's directions. The yogurt will be a soft serve consistency. Place into an airtight container and mix in the chocolate chips. Keep in freezer until yogurt is completely frozen.
*I needed to let the yogurt sit out a bit before serving because it was too hard right from the freezer.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

RR's Pesto Chicken Grill Packets

It's the inevitable approaching end to August. The back to school excitement, anticipation, and stress is coming! I love the newness of a new class, new classroom setup, and unpacking all of the new supplies. I always say in January when people make resolutions that my new year officially starts in September just after labor day. At this point, the to-do list is ambitious, and I am trying to balance accomplishments for work with enjoying the last moments of a flexible schedule. I am using our grill as much as possible these next couple weeks. Before we know it, we will be getting home from work in the dark and craving fall foods. The first week of school is always so draining, and I think I will remake this simple Rachael Ray recipe one night. It is taken from the blog Everything Rachael Ray. If you like pesto, then I think you will like this recipe. I used full sized chicken breasts and increased the cooktime to 40 minutes. We enjoyed these with some grilled corn on the cob.

You will need:
*Olive oil
*4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (about 2 pounds)
*Salt and pepper
*1 cup pesto
*2 zucchini, thinly sliced
*3 plum tomatoes, chopped
*8 scallions, trimmed

1. Preheat a grill to medium.

2. Cut four sheets of heavy-duty foil, each about 1 foot long. Drizzle 1 teaspoon olive oil into the center of each sheet.

3. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Lay 1 piece of chicken in the center of each sheet and spread 1 tablespoon pesto on top.

4. Mound one-quarter of the zucchini, tomatoes and scallions over each chicken breast. Add 3 tablespoons pesto over each mound of veggies. Fold the foil over the chicken and vegetables pinching the edges to seal.

5. Cover and grill the packets over indirect heat for 25 minutes. Remove from the grill and open carefully. (I did closer to 40 because I didn't half the chicken breast, and I am terrified of undercooked chicken!)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

It's been a year peach cobbler

Wow, I cannot believe I started this little blog one year ago. This past year has been the fastest one I have ever experienced in my life. I look forward to to continuing documenting our tried recipes and sharing them here. It is impressive how much less Dave and I eat out, and we rarely ever get takeout. Weekly menu planning is not even a chore anymore, but it has become something I truly enjoy. Dave has even began offering ideas for dinner to try. We started with the goal to try one new recipe a week, and we have expanded to cooking new foods in new ways quite frequently. I find many different recipes through cooking magazines, websites, and other blogs. My Google Reader is one of my favorite things to look through each day. This year we also signed up for a CSA share through a local farm. This has provided us fresh summer produce, and forced us to try some new things. Our share will continue into October, and I hope to feature more recipes made with our fresh produce.
In honor of my 1-year-blogiversary, here is a sweet summer peach cobbler. I made this using peaches we received in last week's CSA. I scaled down the butter and sugar in this recipe, and it was still nice and sweet. A very summery dessert.

Peach Cobbler
Adapted from My Recipes

You will need:
*5 tbsp unsalted butter
*1 cup all-purpose flour
*1 1/2 cups of sugar, divided
*1 tbsp baking powder
*Pinch of salt
*1 cup milk
*4 cups fresh peach slices
*1 lemon juiced
*Ground cinnamon or nutmeg (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375.

2. Melt butter in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish.

3. Combine flour, 3/4 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt; add milk, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Pour batter over butter (do not stir).

4. Bring remaining 1 cup sugar, peach slices, and lemon juice to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly; pour over batter (do not stir). Sprinkle with cinnamon, if desired.

5. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Serve cobbler warm or cool. (We prefer warm)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Buffalo Chicken Burger

We love most things buffalo, so it was no surprise we enjoyed these burgers. My goal this summer is using our grill as much as possible, and I think I am succeeding! I found this recipe on The Tiny Tyrant's Kitchen. As soon as I saw it, I knew it would be a simple, tasty meal. This was great served with some bleu cheese dressing and raw vegetables on the side.

You will need:
*1 pound ground chicken
*2 - 4 oz. bleu cheese crumbles (I just topped the burgers and didn't measure)
*1 egg
*1/2 cup bread crumbs
*1/4 cup - 1/2 cup buffalo wing sauce (Frank's Red Hot is my favorite!)
*salt and pepper, to taste

1) Preheat the grill to medium-high.

2) Mix ground chicken, bread crumbs, egg, wing sauce, salt, and pepper in bowl until well mixed. Divide mixture into eight even patties.

3) Top four of the patties with the bleu cheese crumbles and top with another patty. Seal the sides.

4) Place burgers on on the grill over indirect heat. Cook them for about 8-12 minutes a side.

5) Serve on a bun with extra bleu cheese crumbles or dressing.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Baked Tortellini

It has been a busy, stressful couple of weeks around here. This has been changing our meal times, and some nights we have not even had dinner. (Luckily, things are starting to look up!) I was craving comfort food big time last week. Comfort food to me=cheesy. I made this for lunch one day, and then Dave was able to enjoy it for dinner. It definitely hit the spot.

You will need:
*cheese tortellini-13 oz.
*tomato sauce-1 1/2 cups
*cream cheese-about 4 oz.
*garlic powder-1 tsp
*shredded mozzerella-1/2 cup
(you can use the amount you need. I made this in my 8x8 pyrex)

1) Preheat oven to 350.Cook tortellini according to package instructions. While tortellini is cooking, heat the tomato sauce and cream cheese in a small sauce pan stirring occasionally.

2) Once the cream cheese melts, add the garlic powder.

3) Pour cooked tortellini into a baking pan and cover in the sauce mixture. Top with shredded mozzerella.

4) Bake for about 20 minutes.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Chicken Caprese Couscous

How is it August?! I just can't believe how fast this summer is going by.

I made this recipe for lunch last week. The tomato, basil, and mozzarella were all leftover after making caprese skewers for a friend's bridal shower. As always, I bought way more ingredients than I needed. When feeding a crowd, I always opt to have leftovers than to have too little.

You will need:
*cooked chicken cut into bite sized pieces (optional)
*couscous (I used one cup)
*grape tomatoes
*fresh mozzarella
*fresh basil
*balsamic vingear

1) Boil one cup of water; add salt and stir in couscous. Remove pan from the heat and keep covered for 5 minutes.

2) Fluff couscous with a fork. Mix in your desired amount of chicken, tomato, basil, and fresh mozzarella. I enjoyed this with a dash of balsamic vinegar.

This makes a great summery side dish.