Monday, September 15, 2008


Sorry for neglecting my blog! The wedding is getting very close now and I really haven't been cooking much... mostly just premade junk. A few of the entries below are pretty lame, but they are everyday meals that are easy and we enjoy them. Hopefully it will help you remember a few lost favorites. In three weeks the wedding and honeymoon will be over (booo!) and it will be back to the real world... and the kitchen.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Molly's German Apple Pancake

This looked so good I had to steal it from Molly! I am so sick of the eggs and meat breakfast, I wanted to make something different... so here it is. Matt actually enjoyed this despite the fact that it is sweet. I was even able to snap a picture of the pancake still almost fully puffed up before it deflated. That is one of the great things about German pancakes... they are so light and they get all huge and puffy and look really cool... kind of like a souffle. So thanks Molly, we really enjoyed this one =)

Molly's German Apple Pancake
copied from Molly

Apple Filling:
1 small Granny Smith apple
2 tsp butter or margarine
1/4 c packed brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon (I used 1 1/2)

1/2 c all-purpose flour
1 tbsp granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/2 c milk
2 tsp butter or margarine (melted)
Powdered sugar or warm maple syrup (optional)

Instructions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray small oval baker (I don't have a fancy dish like that, so I used a glass pie pan) with nonstick cooking spray. For apple filling, peel, core and slice apple into thin quarters. Melt butter in small saute pan over medium heat. Add apple, brown sugar and cinnamon. Cook 20 minutes or until apple is very tender and most of the liquid has evaporated. (Why would you do that!? The liquid syrup is the best part! My apples were tender around 10 minutes... I stopped there) Meanwhile, for pancake, combine flour, sugar and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Then whisk together eggs, milk and melted butter in a small mixing bowl. Add egg mixture to flour mixture; whisk until dry ingredients are moistened. (Batter will still be slightly lumpy.) (I just did everything in one bowl at one time) Pour batter into baker. Spoon apple mixture evenly over batter. Bake (on the middle rack!) 20-23 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. Remove from oven; sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired. Cut into wedges and serve with maple syrup, if desired.

Yield: 2 servings

My Notes: As noted above. Also, we did not use maple syrup, it did not need it at all. But a dash or five of powdered sugar never hurt anyone. Make sure there is not a rack above the middle one that you are baking on. The pancake should puff up a top and you don't want it to hit the rack above it!

Easiest Fruit Salad Ever...

We were going to a Labor Day potluck at a friend's house and needed a dish to pass. It sounded like they had most things taken care of but no fruit! This is a family favorite of mine and we even serve it at Thanksgiving. You can pretty much make it with whatever fruit you like and in whatever quantity you like. This is what I did THIS time...

Fruit Salad
Serves: a crowd

In a large bowl, combine your favorite fruits:
-1/2 container blueberries
-3/4 container sliced strawberries
-lots of green grapes
-lots of red grapes
-1 granny smith apple, peeled and chunked
-1 braeburn or fuji apple, peeled and chunked
-1 can pineapple chunks, very well drained
-1 small can mandarin oranges, very well drained

Add about 8 ounces of Cool Whip and blend gently. There should just be enough whipped topping to coat the fruit but not in big blobs. Keep refrigerated! Ta da!

1. Bananas will get mushy in this salad, so if you are not eating it immediately, I do not recommend using them.
2. Leftovers of this are great... however, the longer it sits, the more watery it will get!
3. Be sure to lick the lid of the Cool Whip container. What? That's the best!
4. Chocolate Cool Whip makes this fruit salad very interesting ;)

Spicy Chicken Sandwich

If you haven't guessed by now, we love spicy food and I pretty much start to salivate when I hear anything about Frank's Cayenne Sauces. This was easy and freaking delish. If you hate spicy food, you are reading the wrong blog!

Spicy Chicken Sandwich
Serves: 1 sandwich per person

1. In a skillet, heat some vegetable oil (just cover the bottom of the pan) over medium-high. Olive oil is not appropriate for this recipe.
2. In a large plastic baggy, throw in some italian seasoned bread crumbs, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and paprika.
3. Take thinly sliced chicken breasts and toss them into the bag and make sure they are evenly coated. You really don't need to do anything to them first, the breasts should be moist enough to pick up just a little bit of the seasoned mix.
4. Place breasts into heated oil and cook about 3 minutes per side, or until chicken is fully cooked.
5. Meanwhile, slice up some red onions, cheese (we used pepperjack), and lettuce and toast a hamburger bun. Also, take a small plate and pour out some Frank's Buffalo Wing Sauce.
6. After chicken is cooked, pat with a paper towel (careful not to burn yourself!). Place on the sauced plate and flip over to coat both sides heavily. Any remaining sauce feel free to dump right onto your sandwich... I know I did!
7. Assemble sandwich and grab a big glass of milk to go with it!

Semi-Club Sandwich

This is just plain quick and easy. We like to have our version of a club sandwich any time we have leftover bacon from breakfast the day or two before. Not much of a recipe, but hopefully it is something that you don't have too often but will now that you remember it exists! We had ours with leftover fruit salad and french fries.

Semi-Club Sandwich
Serves: 1 sandwich per person

1. Test your multi-tasking skills and do the following:
-Pop a hamburger bun into the toaster
-Slap some slices of ham, turkey, and bacon on a plate and throw them in the microwave
-Tear up some lettuce
-Slice up some red onion

2. Take the bun out, throw the meat on. Put a slice of cheese on while the meat is warm to make it melt. Put the lettuce and onion on top. Add mayo or other condiments as you see fit.
3. Nom it.

Cheater's Chicken

Ok to be honest, I read a lot of people's food blogs and roll my eyes. I wonder... do they seriously cook something that fancy every freaking night for dinner? If so, then call me jealous! This really doesn't count as a recipe, I just hope it helps out someone with a quick idea of something to whip up for dinner on a night where there just isn't the time for that fancy stuff.

Cheater's Chicken
Feeds: How much chicken do you have?

1. Throw a little oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
2. Toss in some chicken breasts, tenderloins, etc. (I used thinly sliced breasts).
3. Salt and pepper to taste. I added a bunch of cayenne pepper! Mmm, my fave.
4. In this case, I cooked the chicken for 3 minutes each side.
5. Open up your favorite rice mix, make it according to the directions in the same pan as the chicken. I like to use Zatarain's low sodium Jambalaya. But any of the rice-a-roni's or similar work just fine.
6. Serve it with whatever is left in your fridge, call it dinner.

Chicken and Asparagus

I saw this recipe some time ago on I modified it a tad. Overall it came out pretty good and Matt liked it. I personally was not feeling the mayo in this, and will probably sub it out for sour cream or something if I make it again. And if you aren't into kinda mushy asparagus, then this dish might not be for you. We served it with a couple of biscuits.

Chicken and Asparagus
Feeds: 3-4

1 bunch fresh asparagus, snapped (see below)
4 THINLY sliced chicken breasts
1 can cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 tablespoon paprika
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Grease a 9x9 baking dish and cover the bottom completely with as much asparagus as you can fit.
3. Lay chicken breasts in a single layer over asparagus, salt and pepper to taste.
4. In a bowl, mix the mayo, soup, and paprika then pour over chicken, covering completely.
5. Cover and bake for about 30 minutes (until chicken is fully cooked). Remove and sprinkle cheese over top. Put back in the oven for about 5 minutes, or until the cheese is all melted.
6. Remove from the oven and let stand at least 5 minutes before serving.

**Fancy Schmancy Tip: I never knew how much of the asparagus stalk to use... but then I heard this little tip. Just hold both ends and bend. The stalk will snap in the proper place. Discard the stump and voila! Tender fresh asparagus.