Monday, September 5, 2011
Preheat the oven to 275ºF.
Begin by cutting jalapeños in half lengthwise. Try to keep the stems intact.
With a spoon, scrape out the seeds and light-colored membranes. Remember: The heat comes from the seeds and membranes, so if you can handle the sizzle, leave some of them intact.
Now, in a bowl, combine the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and chopped green onion. Mix the ingredients together gently.
Next, stuff each hollowed jalapeño half with the cheese mixture.
Wrap bacon slices around each half, covering as much of the surface as you can. Be careful not to stretch the bacon too tightly around the jalapeño, as the bacon will contract as it cooks.
Brush the surface of the bacon with your favorite barbecue sauce.
Secure the jalapeños with toothpicks and pop them in the oven for 1 hour, or until the bacon is sizzling.
Serve hot or at room temperature.
Thursday, September 1, 2011
I didn't make the onion/olive topping; instead, I drizzled the bread with olive oil and topped with rosemary, salt, pepper, and parmesan.
I made my spaghetti sauce to make a very traditional lasagna. I put sauce in the bottom of the 9x13 pan, layered four cooked lasagna noodles, then a mixture of ricotta, cottage cheese, parmesan, egg, salt, and pepper. I topped this with more sauce and mozzarella cheese. I repeated the noodles/ricotta/sauce mozzarella layer. Finally, I ended with noodles, sauce, mozzarella, and more parmesan. Bake for 30-40 minutes at 350.
Gnocchi with Ricotta and Spinach
Spaghettini with Pesto
I didn't serve this over pasta. If you cook it closer to 30-40 minutes in the oven, the sauce will thicken up. I sliced the chicken breasts in half length-wise. Today's thick chicken breasts take forever to cook through, so I like to cut them thinner and cook them faster. Because I was catering, I brined the chicken breasts for about 1/2 an hour in salty water. This gives you a margin of cooking error - it's much harder to dry them out.
This recipe was requested by the wonderful preschool director - it fit the retreat's theme of a coffee shop. I made it in springform pans, but you can easily make it in a 9x13 pan.
1 package Oreos, ground into crumbs in a food processor
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 jar hot fudge
1 half-gallon coffee ice cream
1 8 oz. container Cool Whip, thawed
chocolate bar shavings for garnish (optional)
Mix together ground Oreos and melted butter and press into bottom of pan. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes. Cool.
Slightly soften ice cream and spread in pan. Refreeze.
Slightly warm hot fudge and spread over ice cream. Freeze.
Spread Cool Whip on top and shave a chocolate bar over the Cool Whip, if using.
Freeze until ready to serve.
This is another Pioneer Woman technique. She says that anytime she goes to a family get-together, everyone asks, "Are you going to bring The Bread?". It's just bread and butter, but the technique of baking then broiling browns the butter and makes the bread unbelievably flavorful and irresistible. People usually think there is something else in the bread, like garlic, but it's just bread and butter.
One loaf of French bread, split
2 sticks of salted butter, softened (you won't need to use all of it unless your bread is huge)
Spread about 3/4 of a stick of butter on each piece of bread. Place side by side on a baking sheet.
Bake for 10 minutes on 350. Turn the oven off and the broiler on. Watch the bread as it browns and slightly blackens. Don't be afraid of the blackening; just a little bit won't make it taste burned. Steel your nerves and remove from oven when golden, brown, and spotty black.