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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Want To Smoke, But Don't Have A Smoker?

How often have you wanted to smoke your own meats, yet don't have a smoker? Well, that problem is solved, just by following a few simple tricks here. Soon you'll be on your way to smoking, whether it's chicken, pork or beef, you'll be enjoying the flavorful cooking and may never want to buy a smoker at all.
Here's all you need to do, and the rest is left up to your imagination.

1) Marinate your meats, using your favorite rub or marinade. Be sure to refrigerate while marinating. When I'm using a dry rub, I like to wrap the meat tightly in plastic wrap. This seals the flavor of the rub to penetrate the meat.

2) While the meat is marinating, place the wood chips in the bottom of your roasting pan, then cover the chips with water. Allow the chips to soak in the water for an hour. After soaking, drain the water, leaving just a hint of water in the pan.

3) Place a rack over the chips, leaving at least an inch of space in between the rack and chips.

4) Preheat your oven to 250, for you are going to be cooking low and slow. Place your bottom rack to the lowest level and remove your top rack, to allow room for your foil tent.

5) Place your meat on the rack. Now, using foil, make a tent. Making sure that the sides are sealed and that there is plenty of room between the meat and the top of your foil tent. Now put it in your oven.

Allow different cook times. For chicken and ribs, allow at least 2-3 hours or until your thermometer reads 165 at the thickest part of the meat. Roasts, allow 8 hours max.

In the last thirty minutes of cook time, remove the foil tent and brush on your favorite barbecue sauce and broil it until the sauce caramelizes. Then remove from heat and allow to rest before serving.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Too Hot To Bake Cookies?

How often, have we wanted to make cookies and it was just too hot to turn on the oven? Well there has been a solution over the years, but not many are aware of it. The Italians have been doing it for many generations.
The Italians called this type of cookie pizzelle. It is believed to be, one of the oldest cookies in the world. Originated in the 8th century. Many families would have hand held waffle irons made, with their family's initials or crest on n the iron. They would then hold the iron over an open fire and "baked" the cookies.
Pizzelle irons are available in markets today, with assorted designs. But for many, a regular waffle iron is just as good. In this blog, I'm going to tell you just how to do just that.

Waffle Iron Cookies

1/2 c. Margarine, melted
4 tbsp. Baking cocoa powder, heaping
2 eggs
3/4 c. Sugar
1 c. Flour
1 tsp. Vanilla
1/2 tsp. Salt

In a bowl, combine melted margarine and cocoa. Stir fry n remaining ingredients until thoroughly mixed and smooth.
 Drop teaspoonfuls of the batter onto a hot waffle iron, "bake" several at a time for 45 seconds. Many waffle irons may have varying temperatures, so "bake" times may vary. Frost after cookies are cooled and serve.
If you want to make it a little special, while the cookies are still warm. Serve with ice cream and some toppings of your choice.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Fall Is Coming! Fall Is Coming!

Fall is coming and I can't wait to enjoy what it brings. The beautiful colors that only nature can bring. The crisp evenings, sipping on hot chocolates or other warm drinks that comes to mind.
I thought I would share with you, one of my favorite drinks. It completely gives a whole new look for hot chocolates or even warm flavored milk drinks. It is my Hot Candy Corn milk. This recipe only calls for one drink, so if you're having company, you'll need to do the math.

Hot Candy Corn Milk

1/2 c. Heavy cream
1 1/2 c. Milk
1/2 c. White chocolate chips
1/2 c. Candy corn
Peel of one orange
1/2 tsp. Vanilla
Pinch of salt
Whipped cream for topping

With a sharp knife or peeler, remove just the orange part of the rind, being careful not to get any of the white pith. For the pith will cause your drink to taste bitter.
Combine all ingredients with the exception of the whipped cream, in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir frequently as the white chocolate and candy corn melt into the milk. Cook until the candies are fully incorporated and the mixture is smooth and creamy. Strain out the orange peels before serving.
To make this eye appealing, add a dollop of the whipped cream and put a couple of pieces of candy corn on top. Enjoy!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Ebook Sale! Cheesecake Galore!

On sale now at Cheesecake Galore is now available at a low price of $5.95. Download your copy now! The sale ends midnight this Friday! Almost a hundred recipes of cheesecakes at your fingertips.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Battling The Bulge and Losing.

I keep telling myself, not to indulge in eating too much sweets, but gosh darn it! I just can't help myself. For when it comes to making fudge, I'm weak and I'm proud of it. For how can you say no, to such delicious sweet fudge?
Whether its chocolate, peanut butter or any other fudge, it is so very hard to say no. Especially if it's Brown Sugar Fudge.
This is one of my favorites to make during the holidays or just when I have a craving for sweets. Its simple, quick and delicious.

Brown Sugar Fudge

3 c. Brown sugar
2 tbsp.corn syrup
3/4 c. Evaporated milk
2/3 c. Sugar
2 tsp. Vanilla
1 c. Peanuts, crushed (optional)

In a large saucepan, combine all ingredients except peanuts, bring to a boil over medium high heat. Stirring until the sugars dissolved. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring frequently. About 30 minutes.
Transfer to a bowl. Stir in peanuts if so desired and beat until the fudge is thick and smooth, about 2-3 minutes.
Pour into an ungreased square pan. Gently score the top of the fudge to the size you want to cut. Refrigerate uncovered, until firm enough to cut, about 30 minutes. Enjoy!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Pop Pop Goes These Tasty Tarts!

The first time I had one of these tasty pies, I was hooked. I can't seem to get enough of them, until I realized just how simple they are to make. So guess what? I save myself a lot of money by making my own to feed my addiction. Ha ha.
These treats are fun to make with the kiddies too, for it can be a family tradition.
Just follow the few simple steps and you be in pop tart heaven in no time.

Homemade Pop Tarts

1 pkg. Ready made pie crust, or you can make your own
1 can or jar of fruit filling of your choice
1 c. Powdered sugar
2-3 tsp. Milk

Preheat oven to 425. Line cooking sheet with parchment paper.
Take the pie crust sheets and lay them flat on a cutting board. Square off the edges and cut the crusts into squares. Put 1 teaspoon of the filling in the center of a square and then topped with another square. Crimp all four sides to seal the tarts. Repeat this step until you have used all of the crusts.
Bake in the oven for 7-8 minutes or until slightly browned. Allow to cool for 5 minutes. 
Meanwhile, prepare your glaze by adding milk to the powdered sugar one teaspoon at a time. Until you reached the desired consistency. Sprinkle with decorative sugar if desired. Enjoy!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Help! I'm Having A Snack Attack!

Yes! I'm under attack, I'm craving for something light and healthy. Now as many of you already know, I have always been one for eating healthy. But growing up, my grandmother would try to come up with clever ways, to get me to eat my veggies. Now, I eat them in so many different ways, that it even amazes me as to how simple and healthy they really are.
But you're probably saying, but why parsnips? Or, any other vegetable for that matter. Well, if you have kids, and you're concerned that they aren't eating healthy enough. Well then there's your answer.

Parsnip Chips

2 medium parsnips, peeled and sliced thin
Oil for frying, I like to use canola, but you can use what you like
Salt, sea or kosher for frying

Heat oil to 350.
Add chips in small batches. They fry fast, so don't leave them unattended. Cook for 20-30 seconds per batch. That should get you a nice golden brown in color. Place on paper towels to drain excess oil. Season with salt.
you can preheat oven to 350. Line a cooking sheet with parchment paper. Then in a bowl, add chips, one tablespoon of oil and enough salt to coat when tossed together. Then place a single layer of chips on the cooking sheet and bake, about 6-8 minutes. Remove and place chips on a cooling rack. They will continue to crisp as they cool.