Saturday, November 20, 2010

Barbeque Chex Mix

This barbeque chex mix was requested by my husband--I'm so glad I obliged. This is a delicious snack, super fast to make, and a really great "appetizer" to set out before your holiday meals. 


3 cups rice Chex
3 cups corn Chex
2-3 cups miniature pretzels
1 cup dry roasted peanuts
1/4 cup barbeque sauce
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp chili powder
black pepper

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. 
In a large bowl, combine cereals, pretzels, and peanuts. In a medium bowl stir together bbq sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, chili powder and pepper. Pour the sauce mixture over the dry ingredients and stir until thoroughly distributed. Spread onto a large cookie sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes, stirring halfway through. 
Mixture will not be dry when you remove it from the oven. 
Spread onto a sheet of wax paper and allow it to cool completely. (Cereal and pretzels will crisp upon cooling.)  


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Cranberry Cinnamon Nut Chex Mix

This was the first time I had attempted a "Chex Mix" and I chose two varieties--cinnamon and barbeque. I checked out a variety of recipes on the Chex website  and came to the conclusion that I should just throw a few of my favorite ingredients in a bowl and call it good. :) This mixture is quite delicious--especially if you're a fan of walnuts, cranberries (raisins would work too) and cinnamon. 


3 cups rice Chex
3 cups corn Chex
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup dried cranberries
1-1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
4 packets Splenda or 3 Tbsp sugar
1/4 cup melted butter

Preheat oven to 325. 
In a large bowl, combine cereal, walnuts, cranberries, cinnamon, nutmeg, and sugar. Melt the butter in a microwave safe bowl and bowl over the dry mixture. Stir until every the butter is evenly distributed. 
Spread on a large cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes, stirring once halfway through. 
Pour mixture onto a sheet of wax paper to cool before storing in an airtight container. 


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Slow Cooked Vegetable Pork Roast

This is one of the easiest meals to put together and by the end of its cooking time it's completely irresistible. I'm not a huge meat eater, but I was in love with this. Kevin went back for seconds and thirds--which only happens if he's totally crazy about the meal. 

Slow Cooker Vegetable Pork Roast
serves 4 
3-4 lb pork loin roast 
4-5 small potatoes, chopped
2 carrots, sliced (1/2" slices)
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1--14.5oz can cream of mushroom soup
      plus one can of water
1 cup chopped kale, options

Fill your 4-5 qt. crockpot with potatoes, carrots, and half of the onions. Pour the mushroom soup and one can of water onto the potatoes and stir to combine. Generously salt and pepper the pork roast--patting the spices into the meat. Place meat on top of potato mixture and top with remaining onions. Cook on high 4 hours or on low 6-8 hours. Fifteen minutes prior to serving, stir in chopped kale. 

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Cinnamon Sugar Biscotti

Biscotti are a twice-baked Italian cookie that are just begging to be enjoyed by dunking into your favorite hot beverage. I grew up around these--being from an Italian family. My grandma would always have these hard cookies around to eat with her cup of tea. I never really understood their appeal back then. But now? I'm totally geeked about these things.

I made biscotti for the first time two Christmases ago and I wasn't all that impressed with them. I think I overbaked the darn things. But if you're careful, the result of this recipe is perfectly delicious.


Cinnamon Sugar Biscotti
recipe from Joy the Baker

Yield: about 20-24 cookies
For the dough:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1½ tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
1 cup sugar
6 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 large egg plus 1 large egg yolk
1 tsp. vanilla extract

For the topping:
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 large egg, lightly beaten

Preheat the oven to 325˚ F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.  In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt; whisk to blend and set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until lightly and fluffy, 3-4 minutes, scraping down the bowl as needed.  Blend in the egg and then the egg yolk, beating well after each addition.  Blend in the vanilla until incorporated.  With the mixer on low speed, blend in the dry ingredients just until incorporated and a dough is formed.
Divide the dough into two halves.  Shape each half into a log 9 inches long by 1½ inches wide on the prepared baking sheet, spacing the logs at least 3-4 inches apart.  In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon for the topping and stir to blend well.  Lightly brush the tops of the logs with the beaten egg, and sprinkle generously with some of the cinnamon sugar mixture.
Bake for 40-45 minutes, rotating halfway through baking, until the tops are golden brown and slightly firm to the touch.  Remove the pan from the oven but maintain the oven temperature.  Once the logs are cool enough to handle, slice on the diagonal into 1½-inch slices (about 10-12 per log).  Place biscotti cut side-down on the baking sheet and sprinkle with more of the cinnamon sugar mixture.  Bake an additional 10-15 minutes, until crisp and golden.

Enjoy with your favorite hot beverage! This is a cookie that was made for dunking.