Tastybitsandbites’s Weblog


TWD – A labour of love
May 27, 2008, 1:19 am
Filed under: Uncategorized
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Comfort food
May 19, 2008, 11:42 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

 

Like most people I eat what I crave and sometime I just want good old comfy cozy food. Food that makes me want to get all wrapped up in a fuzzy blanket and lay on the couch and read a good book.

I found both of these recipes on a GREAT blog called Pioneer Woman. She is a hilarious lady who loves to cook for her family and have fun while doing so. I’ve tried 4 of her recipes and have LOVED all of them. I’ll definetly be posting more of them in the future so stay tuned. In the meantime you should check her out for yourself at:

thepioneerwoman.com

The above photo is of her Chicken Spaghetti and Mystery Rolls…..mmmmmm……..I’m cravin’ them again already 🙂

 

Chicken Spaghetti
2 cups cooked chicken ( 1 whole chicken cut up or 4 chicken breasts)
2 cans Cream of Mushroom soup
2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup finely diced green pepper
1/2 cup finely diced onion

1-4 oz jar diced pimentos, drained
3 cups dry spaghetti, broken into two inch pieces
2 cups reserved chicken broth from pot
1 teaspoon Lawry’s Seasoned Salt
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 additional cup grated sharp cheddar cheese

Cook chicken in boiling water and then shred the meat. Cook spaghetti in same chicken broth until al dente. Do not overcook. When spaghetti is cooked, combine with remaining ingredients except additional 1 cup sharp cheddar. Place mixture in casserole pan and top with remaining sharp cheddar. Cover and freeze up to six months, cover and refrigerate up to two days, or bake immediately: 350 degrees for 45 minutes until bubbly. (If the cheese on top starts to get too cooked, cover with foil.) I used 2 9″ round pans and froze one of them for later.

 

Mystery Rolls

1/2 c. butter
2-3 ounces crumbled blue cheese
1 can Pillsbury flaky biscuits

Combine butter and cheese on baking pan. Place into 350 oven for a couple of minutes, or until butter is melted. Remove from oven and stir. Cut biscuits into fourths, then toss in butter mixture. Bake on same pan (or different, if you prefer) for 8 to 12 minutes, or until golden. Eat warm.



Mmmmm…………peanut butter torte………
May 7, 2008, 2:14 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

 

This is my first attempt with “Tuesdays with Dorie” which is a baking blog devoted to the book “Baking From My Home to Your’s” by Dorie Greenspan. I was so excited that this was going to be my first project as peanut butter and chocolate are one of my all time favorite combinations. I cannot wait to make more of the many tempting recipes in this book.

 Aside from a slightly burnt bottom which was my own fault this was creamy, rich, and delicious. The filling was sinfull and I would definetly make it again, however I think that I would try a different crust next time or maybe make brownies in a mini muffin tin and pipe the filling on top??

I didn’t have time to add the chocolate topping that the recipe called for as I had to rush home to change to go out for a BBQ – which is where I brought the tart. In retrospect, I should have left my baby blue jogging pants on and gone to dinner “as is” and finished the tart :).

On a side note I was wearing baby blue jogging pants because I had been out at the cottage and ended up getting completely soaked from the waste down. My puppy fell off the dock into the freezing cold lake TWICE and I had to save her TWICE as apparently she only knows how to tread water and hasn’t quite figured out how to propel herself forwards to shore. So I had to borrow these sweet baby blue sweat pants from my Mother in-law – which matched exactly to my baby blue raincoat so I ended up looking like a giant baby blue crayon! Hopefully puppy learns how to swim sooner rather than later!

On to the torte……..

 

Peanut Butter Torte

1 ¼ c. finely chopped salted peanuts (for the filling, crunch and topping)

2 teaspoons sugar

½ teaspoon instant espresso powder (or finely ground instant coffee)

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon (essential in my opinion)

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

½ c. mini chocolate chips (I used normal ones)

24 Oreo cookies, finely crumbed or ground in a food processor or blender

½ stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

Small pinch of salt

2 ½ c. heavy cream

1 ¼ c confectioners’ sugar, sifted

12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

1 ½ c salted peanut butter – crunchy or smooth (not natural; I use Skippy)

2 tablespoons whole milk

4 ounces bittersweet chocolate finely chopped

Getting ready: center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-inch Springform pan and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat. (I used a 9″ removable bottom tart pan and felt it worked fine).

Toss ½ cup of the chopped peanuts, the sugar, espresso powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and chocolate chops together in a small bowl. Set aside.

Put the Oreo crumbs, melted butter and salt in another small bowl and stir with a fork just until crumbs are moistened. Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom and up the sides of the spring form pan (they should go up about 2 inches on the sides). Freeze the crust for 10 minutes.

Bake the crust for 10 minutes, then transfer it to a rack and let it cool completely before filling.

Working with a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, whip 2 cups of the cream until it holds medium peaks. Beat in ¼ cup of the confectioners’ sugar and whip until the cream holds medium-firm peaks. Crape the cream into a bowl and refrigerate until needed.

Wipe out (do not wash) the bowl, fit the stand mixer with the paddle attachment if you have one, or continue with the hand mixer, and beat the cream cheese with the remaining 1 cup confectioners’ sugar on medium speed until the cream cheese is satiny smooth. Beat in the peanut butter, ¼ cup of the chopped peanuts and the milk.

Using a large rubber spatula, gently stir in about one quarter of the whipped cream, just to lighten the mousse. Still working with the spatula, stir in the crunchy peanut mixture, then gingerly fold in the remaining whipped cream.

Scrape the mouse into the crust, mounding and smoothing the top. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight; cover with plastic wrap as soon as the mousse firms.

To Finish The Torte: put the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Leave the bowl over the water just until the chocolate softens and starts to melt, about 3 minutes; remove the bowl from the saucepan.

Bring the remaining ½ cup cream to a full boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate and , working with a a rubber spatula, very gently stir together until the ganache is completely blended and glossy.

Pour the ganache over the torte, smoothing it with a metal icing spatula. Scatter the remaining ½ cup peanuts over the top and chill to set the topping, about 20 minutes.

When the ganache is firm, remove the sides of the Springform pan; it’s easiest to warm the pan with a hairdryer, and then remove the sides, but you can also wrap a kitchen towel damped with hot water around the pan and leave it there for 10 seconds. Refrigerate until ready to serve.



Chewy Maple Coconut Cookies
May 5, 2008, 2:02 pm
Filed under: Cookies

 

I made a batch of Chewy Maple Coconut cookies as we recently had a Maple Syrup festival in town and I was in the mood to cook with some of the liquid gold. I found this recipe in a cookbook that belonged to Hubby’s Gramma called “Sample of the North a Festival of Maple Syrup Recipes”. The cookies are sweet and go well with a cuppa milky tea.

 

Chewy Maple Coconut Cookies

  

  ½ c. butter at room temp.

  1 c. packed brown sugar

  1 egg

  ½ c. maple syrup

  1 tsp. vanilla

  1 ½ c. flour

  2 tsp. baking powder

  ½ tsp. salt

  1 c. flaked unsweetened coconut

 

  In a mixing bowl cream the butter and brown sugar till fluffy.

  Beat in the egg, syrup and vanilla until well mixed.

  Combine the flour, baking powder and salt and add to the creamed mixture.

  Stir in coconut. Drop by tablespoonfuls 2” apart onto greased baking sheets.

  Bake at 375 for 12-15 min or until lightly browned.

  Yield: 3 dozen