Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Flour Tortillas

Let me start by saying there is nothing like a homemade tortilla. Once you start making and eating them you can hardly choke down a store bought one. Now these babies take practice. I have been making them for a couple years now and can finally say that they are nearly as good as the ones my hubby grew up eating.(from little mexican ladies across the border)I have even been given the thumbs up from the hubs on these. He won't even touch a burritos unless I make these. Now these aren't hard to mix up but they are hard to get rolled out and take a while to make becaue you have to roll one out cook it and then do another. YOu can't roll all the dough and then cook it all it just doesn't work. It goes faster if you have one rolling and one cooking but that doesn't happen to often around here. I still cannot make mine perfectly round but I am still working on it and hey they still taste wonderful even if not completely round and don't even get me started on the quesadillas with these babies. they are out of this world.

Flour Tortillas
5 cups flour
2 cups very hot water
2 tsp salt
1/2 cup shortening or lard

With your stand mixer and the paddle attachement, mix the flour and salt. Mix in the shortening or lard until resembles fine crumbs.Add the water a little at a time until reach desired consistency. Should be a firm but soft dough(not too sticky but not too stiff) Mine is always firmer than bread dough if that helps you out. Sometimes I use all the water sometimes I don't. Remove from the mixer and roll into balls. Sprinkle your work surface with a little flour and working one at a time. Roll into a paper thin, and I mean paper thin as in you can almost see through it to the counter. then place in a hot skillet and cook pressing down with a kitchen towel until brown spots dot the surface of tortilla. FLip over and do same to other side. Should only take a few seconds. Do not overcook. Place in between two layers of a kitchen towel. Repeat with the next ball and once cooked stack all of them together on towel. The steam from each one keeps them soft.

Note: I use a piece of pvc pipe to roll them out. It works way better than a rolling pin. Just ask you husband to pick you up a small piece at lowes or home depot if you don't have one laying around the house.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cheescake Bars

As a little kid I love spreading cream cheese over my chocolate chip cookies. So when I came across this ideas for to have cheesecake between two layers of cookie dough I knew that I had to try them out. Oh boy these were so yummy!! The nice thing about them is if you are short on time you can just use store bought premade dough. Now I am not into that nor will I ever be but I will never know of you do so just make it how you want to.If you love chocolate chip cookies and cheesecake give these babies a try you won't regret it.

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Bars

1 1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 T. vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3 cups flour
1-2 packages chocolate chips(depending on how much you like we like a lot)

In a mixer, mix the butter and sugars until light a fluffy. Add the eggs and mix well. Pour in vanilla and mix. Add the dry ingredients and mix till well combined.Pour in chocolate chips and stir. Press half of the cookie dough into a 9x13 inch pan(preferably not a glass one)Set aside this and the remaining dough.

For cheesecake layer:
Mix 2 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, 2 eggs, 1/3 cup sugar and 1/2 tsp vanilla until well combined. Spread over the bottom layer of dough in pan then top with the remaining cookie dough all over the top as evenly as you can.
Bake in a 325 degree oven for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

I think they taste best chilled. ALso store in the fridge

I pat the remaining dough into little circles and place them over the cream cheese layer because you can't press it over the cream cheese layer or it will make a mess.

You could also use other flavors of cookie dough if you prefer as well. Make the recipe your own!!!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Flakey Buttermilk Biscuits

I have been searching for years for that one great biscuit recipe and I found it a couple of months ago over at the Recipe Shoebox.Now these biscuits are made with butter and let me tell you they are awesome. None of that shortening flavor you get with ones made with shortening. Now I have tried to make these with shortening just for food storage purposes and they are fine but if you want a real yummy flakey buttery biscuit give this recipe a try and follow the directions to a T. You will not be disappointed I promise!!!

Flakey Buttermilk Biscuits

2 cups flour
2-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
5 Tbs. chilled butter, cut into small pieces
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 Tbs. honey

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in large bowl; cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Chill 10 minutes. In a small bowl, combine buttermilk and honey, stirring with a whisk until well-blended. Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture; stir just until moist.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly 4 times. Roll dough into a 1/2-inch thick 9x5-inch rectangle; dust top of dough with flour. Fold dough crosswise into thirds (as if folding a piece of paper to fit into an envelope). Reroll dough into a 1/2-inch thick 9x5-inch rectangle; dust top of dough with flour. Fold dough crosswise into thirds again; gently roll or pat to a 3/4-inch thickness. Cut dough with a 1-3/4-inch biscuit cutter to form 10 dough rounds. Place dough rounds, 1 inch apart, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or you can just grease the cookie sheet with Pam. Bake at 375 degrees for 12 minutes or until golden. Remove from pan; cool 2 minutes on wire racks. Serve warm. Enjoy!

Note:I always double the recipe for my family of 5 I find that it doesn't always make ten biscuits like the recipe says because we like ours a little bit fatter!!!
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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Thai Coconut Curry Noodles

If you want something yummy and fast to cook for dinner let me introduce you to these yummy Thai noodles. They came together in less than a half hour from start to finish. My kids as well as my husband and I gobbled these up in a hurry. Once again my picture is less than stellar but I am sure you are use to my bad photography skills by now. One of these days I will be better at it but for now just trust me these noodles are yummy.

Thai Coconut Curry Noodles

1 lb. linguini
1(12oz) package of frozen stir fry veggies or 6 oz broccoli and 6 oz julienned carrots(i had 12 oz of broccoli slaw mix that had julienned carrots, cabbage and broccoli in it so that is what I used)
1/2 c. sliced green onions
1 red, yellow, or orange bell pepper, thinly sliced(I used a handful of mini sweet peppers)
1 tsp dried ginger or 1 T. minced fresh ginger
2 T. minced garlic
3 T. red curry paste
Juice of 1 lime
3 T. olive oil
1 can coconut milk
2 T. soy sauce
4 T. sweet chili sauce(can find at walmart in asian section-i used the Mae Ploy brand)
Salt and pepper to taste
Sesame Seed for garnish

Cook past according to the package directions. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, soy sauce, sweet chili sauce, curry paste, and lime juice. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the green onions, ginger, garlic, and red peppers and cook until veggies are tender and garlic is fragrant. Add the veggies you are using whether frozen or the broccoli and carrrots or the broccoli slaw. Cook until those veggies are heated through and crisp tender. Then add the coconut mixture and cook until it begins to boil. Boil for a few minutes stirring often. Then add cook noodles to sauce and veggies and mix well. Serve with extra limes and sesame seeds if desired.

Note:use whatever combination of veggies you like. I chose the broccoli slaw because I had it on hand and knew it would cook up quickly because the veggies were cut small. Next time I am going to try some broccoli flourets and see which I like better. Be creative use what your family will eat!!!YOu don't always have to stick strictly to a recipe change it up to fit your family's likes!!!