Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Cannoli

One of my sister's favorite desserts are cannoli. So this Christmas, after seeing a semi-homemade version, I called my Aunt and got our grandmother's cannoli filling recipe.

1 container ricotta (don't drain it like the link says. My Aunt was shocked!! She said if you drain it, you'll break the cheese up to shit) plus 1 cup powdered sugar and a teaspoon of vanilla.... then with an electric mixer "whip the hell out of it. The more you whip it the fluffier it will get". Then fold in mini chocolate chips. 

Do not fill the cones until you are about to eat them Otherwise the cones/shells will get soggy. 

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Monday, December 26, 2011

Gummy's Molasses Cookies


This molasses cookie recipe has been in  my family for generations. It's not Christmas without these being made...even if it is the day after Christmas. 

When my cousin was stationed in Afghanistan we would pack up a care package with unfrosted cookies in them and a note saying "Share". (haha)

The one (unique) thing about these cookies is it uses BACON GREASE as the shortening. I know it sounds strange but trust me.

Ingredients:


1 C Sugar
You can see it's a well loved recipe. 
1 C Bacon grease, melted
1 tsp baking soda
2 eggs, beaten
1 C molasses
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 C hot coffee
1/2 tsp vanilla
4 C flour

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350*


1. Cream together sugar, grease/shortening and eggs

2. In separate bowl combine molasses and baking soda, set aside until it doubles in size. Once doubled add sugar/shortening mix into molasses. 
3. Add cinnamon, cloves and ginger into flour
4. Mix vanilla into hot coffee. 
5. Alternate mixing flour mix and hot coffee into molasses mixture (ending on flour mix: flour, coffee, flour, coffee, flour)
6. Drop large spoonfuls onto cold/room temperature cookie sheets. Bake 12-15 minutes. 

Let cool. Eat with Royal Icing or unfrosted. 

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas Meatballs

hamburger, italian sausage, breadcrumbs, onion, egg, milk, salt & pepper
I had to split off the casings - couldn't find ground sausage
grate 1/2 an onion into the hamburger & sausage
add egg and dash of milk
Mix in salt, pepper and a few handfuls of bread crumbs
(also parmesan cheese which I forgot this time)
Roll into golf ball size mound and place on ungreased cookie sheets
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes - let cool slightly
Place into stew pot and add favorite spaghetti sauce.
Let simmer additional 20+ minutes.


Road Block

Waiting for my next rib tickler and/or inspirational blog (*winkwink*) check out my other blog (all food. all the time) at http://www.epicureanenthusiast.blogspot.com

Memphis Mafia Banana Bread

Memphis Mafia
So this banana bread has peanut butter and chocolate chips in it. Reminds me of the Voodoo Doughnut Memphis Mafia banana fritter (chocolate and peanut butter drizzled banana fritter). 


The first time I heard of this banana bread combination was from a friend (and fellow blogger) Marni

I had a White Elephant and Potluck party at work and with so many bananas in my freezer I figured there was no better time than now to give it a try.... and I turned mine into muffins instead of a loaf.

Here's the recipe I used but I altered it some (because of what was or wasn't in my cupboards):

ignore the baking powder above....it snuck into the picture
1 1/2 C ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 C cream cheese, softened
1/2 C peanut butter, creamy
3 Tbs butter, melted
1 egg
1/2 C white sugar
1/2 C brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 C flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 C semi sweet chocolate chips




Preheat oven to 400*

Cream bananas, cream cheese, peanut butter, butter and egg. 

Add sugars. Mix well. 

Add flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.  Blend well. 

Fold in chocolate chips. 

Spoon 2 TB worth of batter into papered muffin tins. 

Bake for 25 minutes. Yields 2 dozen. 



Thursday, December 22, 2011

Soft Ginger Cookies

So Betty Crocker sometimes is the best way to go
when you're rushed and busy with holidays, etc.
Just follow the directions and mix up all the ingredients
This time we turned "gingerbread" into soft/chewy ginger cookies.
Rolling them in sugar added a fun and festive sparkle to the cookies
Yum. Yum.

Arrzo con Chorizo

Cook chorizo
Dice onions
Add onions and mild green chilies to par-cooked chorizo
Finish cooking thoroughly
Serve on rice and enjoy

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Coming Soon to a Computer Near You

Blog entries to come.

Until then check out my other blogs here and here.

Mexican Wedding Kisses

Mexican Wedding Kisses are a MustHave around my house during the holidays. We've already make Fyne Cakes and Dream Lover's Cookies so last night was Wedding Kisses time.

Some people may also know them as Russian Tea Cakes.

Ingredients:

1 Stick Butter
3 TB powdered sugar
1 C flour, sifted
1 C finely chopped pecans
extra powdered sugar for rolling in


Directions:
Heat over to 350*
Cream butter and sugar together.
Add flour.
Fold in chopped pecans.
Make 1 inch rolled balls and place on ungreased cookie sheet (they do not spread much at all so go ahead and put them close together).

Bake for 8-10 minutes.
Remove from oven and let cool 5 minutes.
Roll cookies in powdered sugar.
Let finish cooling and enjoy!

Blog Block

I realized it's been a while since I've blogged....with the holidays, busy season at work and just life happening I just haven't really found the time to sit and write something. 

But I have one I'm working on about shhhh.....Secrets. ;)

So hopefully I'll be ready to upload and publish it soon. 

Until then Happy Holidays everyone!

(...and don't forget to check out my other blog for yummy holiday cookie ideas...)

Friday, December 2, 2011

Makes Me Sick.

It just makes me sick that we still live in a world where this discrimination and hatred exists. 

"In a move to "promote greater unity" among its body and the Pike County community it serves, a small Kentucky church voted to ban interracial couples from membership and from participating in certain worship activities, Kentucky.com reports.

Though reminiscent of some Jim Crow-era mandate, the Gulnare Freewill Baptist Church actually made the decision earlier this month, following a visit from 24-year-old Stella Harville, daughter of the church's secretary and clerk, and her 29-year-old fiance, Ticha Chikuni, a native of Zimbabwe.
According to Harville's father, Dean Harville, Stella brought Chikuni to the church in June where they performed a song for the congregation. 

Following the visit, former pastor Melvin Thompson told Harville that his daughter and her fiance could not sing at the church again. Thompson later proposed that the church go on record saying that while all people were welcome to attend public worship services there, the church did not condone interracial marriage.

His proposal, which was accepted by a 9-6 vote last week, also suggested that married interracial couples be prohibited from becoming members and used in worship activities, except for funerals.
"It's not the spirit of the community in any way, shape or form," said Randy Johnson, president of the Pike County Ministerial Association, according to Kentucky.com.

While Pike County and the surrounding community come to grips with the church's decision, researchers at Ohio State University and Cornell University say black-white marriages in the United States are soaring, increasing threefold, from 3 percent in 1980 to 10.7 percent in 2008."

Did You Know?

Since moving to Portland two years ago I've tried to do what I can to make the best of where I'm living.. Visiting touristy and local hot spots alike. Trying out and exploring the culinary scene that makes Portland a foodies-wet-dream. Just generally trying to familiarize myself with the ins-and-outs of this new town. 

So when a friend forwarded me this "9 Facts You Might Not Know About Portland, OR" I was so up for the challenge!!

Here they are:
9. Portland is the only city with an extinct volcano within city limits. Yep. Mt Tabor. Not too far from where I live too. 

8. Portland has more movie theatres and restaurants, per capita, than any other city in the United States. Now while I didn't necessarily know this exact fact it's hard to not believe it. Especially where McMenamin's often times combines both in one establishment.

7. Portland has the second largest hammered copper statue in the world (the first is the Statue of Liberty). I did know this. Her name is Portlandia and she lives on 5th in Downtown. Depending on what angle you look at her she's either beautiful or a bit scary. 

6. More than 20 Farmer's Markets and 35 Community Gardens provide access to fresh, locally sourced food. Yes I did know that. And I've been to a number of them. :)
5. Saturday Market is the Largest continuously operating open-air crafts market in the United States. So while I did not know this I also don't agree with it...mostly because Saturday Market does shut down January and February (understandably so). So does that still count as "continuously"? I think this is a prime example of Portland just wants to be #1 at whatever it can. 

4. Portland's International Rose Test Garden is the oldest in the Nation. Believe it or not, I did know this. Mostly from my time working at the Portland Rose Festival. The garden was opened/started in 1917 and is actually 5 gardens in one.
3. Portland has more microbreweries and brew pubs than any other city in the nation. Again, I did know this. And because we're the microbrewery capital of the USA that means it's damn impossible to find a freaking liquor store anywhere!! Actually I have no idea if one is because of the other but it sounds like a good blame.

2. Portland is home to the nation's largest urban park - the 5,000 acre Forest Park. Look at me go! I knew this too!! I also know that Portland houses the smallest park in the WORLD!! Mills End Park. It's a whopping 452 sq. inches
1. Portland's nicknames include "Rose City", "City of Bridges", "Rip City", "River City", "Stumptown" and "Puddletown". Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, and yes! Although the "official" nickname is "City of Roses".
So in the end. I'm very proud of how much I've learned about my new town in the last two years. :)