For dinner Saturday, we were just looking for something quick and easy, so I used another recipe from Laura W: Baked Ziti. She got the recipe from allrecipes.com and said her sister makes it often.
It was OK, but my dad complained about the lack of meat (no surprise there though). I think I might have messed up the quantities or something (I did use macaroni instead of ziti), because it probably could have used more cheese and sauce. Overall, it's easy and you can mess with it as much as you want to. Also, you might have all the ingredients for it in your pantry right now.
Oh, and I don't have the picture for this one because, apparently, when I asked my sister to take a picture of it, she thought I meant with ... like .... a camera or something. (I take all these pictures with my phone). So I'm too lazy to look for the camera cord ... but I think y'all can just imagine what this looks like, can't you?
1 (26 oz.) Jar Prego Traditional Italian Sauce
1 1/2 Cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
5 Cups Hot Cooked Tube-shaped Pasta (Ziti)
1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
1. Mix pasta sauce, 1 cup mozzarella cheese and ziti. Spoon into 2-quart shallow baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese.
2. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes or until hot.
For dessert the same night, I made these chocolate banana wontons - mainly because my mom had all the ingredients and I love chocolate and banana together! They were delish and we ate all of them! We weren't huge fans of the dipping sauce, however. We thought it might be good to, instead of sprinkling the powdered sugar, make a simple icing (milk and powdered sugar).
This was the first time I ever fried anything and it went pretty well. At my mom's suggestion, I did it in a skillet instead of the deep fryer.
Short version: YUMMY. Oh, and mangoes are slimy. Do not like.
1/4 cup pineapple juice
3 Tbsp. lime juice
1 Tbsp. granulated sugar
24 wonton wrappers (about 3-1/2x3-1/2-inch squares)
1 medium banana, peeled and cut into 24 slices
4 oz. milk chocolate bar, broken into 24 equal pieces
Cooking oil for deep-fat frying
1) For the mango sauce, combine mango, pineapple juice, lime juice, and granulated sugar in a blender or food processor. Cover and blend or process until smooth. Spoon into a serving bowl, cover, and chill until serving time or up to 24 hours.
2) For each wonton, lay a wonton wrapper on a work surface with a point toward you. Lay a banana slice and a chocolate piece on the lower half of the wonton wrapper. Brush edges of wonton wrapper with water. Fold the top point down to meet the bottom, forming a triangle. Gently press the edges together to seal. Set aside; cover with plastic wrap while filling remaining wonton wrappers. Repeat with remaining wonton wrappers, banana slices, and chocolate pieces. (At this point, filled wontons can be covered with plastic wrap and chilled up to 24 hours before frying.)
3) Heat 3 inches of cooking oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan to 365 degrees F. Fry wontons, 4 to 6 at a time, in hot oil for 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown, turning occasionally to brown evenly. Use a slotted spoon to remove wontons from oil to paper towels to drain. Cool about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve within 1 hour with mango sauce for dipping. Makes 24 wontons.
For breakfast on Sunday, I made a blueberry streusel coffee cake, which turned out OK. Here are my tips to help make yours turn out better than mine did:
- Make sure you reserve enough batter to cover the top.
- In fact, make a little extra batter.
- I'd advise using most of the "topping" in the middle layer and just sprinkling it on the top. On top, it becomes a hard crunch layer that's just not as satisfying as when it's mixed up with the hot and juicy blueberries.
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
3/4 cup chopped nuts
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries, thawed
1. In a small bowl, stir together sour cream and baking soda. Set aside.
2. In a mixing bowl, beat granulated sugar and butter with electric mixer on medium speed until well mixed. Beat in eggs and vanilla until well mixed. Add the flour and baking powder; beat until well mixed. Pour the foamy sour cream mixture into batter; mix well.
3. For topping, in another bowl, combine brown sugar, cinnamon, and nuts. Set aside.
4. Spread half of the batter into a greased 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Sprinkle blueberries over batter. Sprinkle with half of the topping. Carefully spread remaining batter over all; sprinkle remaining topping over. 5. Bake in a 325 degree F oven for 55 to 60 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Serve warm or at room temperature. Makes 16 servings
For Father's Day dinner I made Puff Pastry Shells with Brie and Lobster (Crab) Cream. These were actually really easy to make despite it being all fancy. I never knew there was such a thing as frozen puff pastry shells. Now that I do... it's going to be dangerous for my waist line. I can think of all sorts of things to put in these little wonders!
They were pretty good except the crab that we got was a little fishy - so that was distracting.
2 tablespoons butter (no substitutes)
1 small red onion, finely chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1-1/4 cups half-and-half or light cream
1/2 cup dry white wine or champagne
6 ounces Brie cheese, rind removed, cut up
8 ounces fresh or frozen lobster or crabmeat, cut into chunks (about 1-1/2 cups)
Green peppercorns in brine, drained; capers, drained; halved dried figs; or chopped smoked almonds (optional)
1. Thaw and bake pastry shells according to package directions.
2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Add onion and garlic; cook and stir over medium heat for 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in flour and ground red pepper. Stir in half-and-half or light cream and wine or champagne. (Mixture may appear curdled, but will become smooth as it cooks.) Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly; cook and stir 1 minute more. Add Brie, stirring until melted. Add lobster or crabmeat; heat through.
3. Spoon into baked pastry shells. Garnish with peppercorns, capers, figs, or almonds as desired. Makes 12 appetizer servings.
OK, so I cheated a little for Monday. Not much, but a little. About a week ago, I decided I was going to make my sister and I these crab salad sandwiches. We've eaten these all our lives. So I start making it and suddenly realize that I've never actually made it. I've watched my mom and my sister make them countless times, but I've never done it. I didn't count that for the recipe that day, but I made it again Monday and I'm counting it. Because working from 8 AM until 11 PM two days in a row should give me some leeway here.
I don't have a picture of this one either because I was about to pass out and couldn't be bothered to press the two buttons on my phone. I'm also not really good at judging amounts so .... sorry if this isn't as precise as you would like:
First, put imitation crab in a bowl. Use about as much as you think would be good for a sandwich (I don't know, 1/2 cup? 1/3 cup? probably less). Mix in a big sprinkle of shredded swiss cheese and a squirt or two (I use the squeezable kind) of Miracle Whip. Spread across bread. Enjoy!
Haha, this is why I don't write recipe books. I guess you could use mayonnaise instead of Miracle Whip, but then you wouldn't have that zip!
Like I said, it's one of my favorites from growing up and it's a fresh alternative to ham and cheese/PB&J (which I LOVE also).
I had to work 8AM til 11PM again on Tuesday so I gave K three recipes yesterday morning. I told her to pick one and get the ingredients on the way home. She picked the Easy Chicken Pot Pie. I made it late last night, scarfed it down before bed and ate it for lunch too.
While this might not be quite as good as the traditional (aka time-consuming) version, you really can't beat taking five minutes to throw things in a pan and having a full meal 30 minutes later. The ease of it simply can't be beat.
I think this might be even better - and still just as easy - if you used a Pillsbury dough of some kind. Like crescent rolls (I love pot pies with a flaky crust!)
1 pkg. (about 9 ounces) frozen mixed vegetables , thawed
1 can (12.5 ounces) Swanson® Premium White Chunk Chicken Breast in Water , drained
1/2 cup milk
1 cup all-purpose baking mix
1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Stir the soup, vegetables and chicken in a 9-inch pie plate.
3. Stir the milk, egg and baking mix in a small bowl. Spread the batter over the chicken mixture. Bake for 30 minutes or until the topping is golden brown.
4. Cost per recipe: $8.09 Cost per recipe serving: $2.02