Browsing Category "Food"
4 Jul
2012
Posted in: Food
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Blueberry Cheesecake Pie

I mentioned last week that I’d made two blueberry cheesecake dishes and one was a White Chocolate Blueberry Cheesecake for my husband. The other is today’s recipe, a Blueberry Cheesecake Pie. The recipe comes from Mel at Mel’s Kitchen Cafe. This cheesecake doesn’t even require a springform pan or a water bath so it’s a very easy recipe to make.

cheesecake pie

This dish is a perfect summer dish. Blueberries with cheesecake and lemon are pretty much the best thing ever. It’s a smaller portion than the cheesecake I made and a lot easier if you’re looking for a no-fail cheesecake. This recipe has more of a lemon taste and the blueberry flavor comes from a jam you make for the top of the dish. You bake the crust, then the cheesecake, and then pour warm berries on the warm cheesecake so it sets in one big pie. My dad sure gobbled it up. (That’s him holding his piece below)

blueberry cheesecake pie

Blueberry Cheesecake Pie

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Recipe from Mel's Kitchen Cafe

Ingredients

    For the Crumb Crust:
  • 9 large rectangular graham crackers, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 6 tablespoons melted butter
  • For the Cheesecake:
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 eggs
  • Freshly grated zest from 1 lemon
  • For the Berry Topping:
  • 2 cups blueberries
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with 2 tablespoons cold water

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, combine the crushed graham crackers, sugar and butter.
  2. Pat the crumb mixture into a 9-inch pie pan and bake for 8 minutes at 325 degrees. Let the crust cool completely.
  3. After the crust cools, zest your lemon into a medium bowl. Add in the cream cheese, sugar, and lemon juice and and beat until smooth. Mix in the eggs until just combined.
  4. Pour into the graham cracker crust and bake 25 minutes at 325 degrees.
  5. While the custard is baking, combine the berries, water, and sugar in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.
  6. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 5 minutes, stirring once or twice to prevent sticking. Remove from the heat and add the cornstarch mixture. Return to a boil and cook for one minute, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thickened. Remove from the heat and cool until the mix is warm but no longer hot.
  7. After the cheesecake is finished, leave it out until the berries are warm. Spoon the berries over the cheesecake and chill for 1 hour.
http://www.thehyperhouse.com/2012/07/blueberry-cheesecake-pie/

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29 Jun
2012
Posted in: Food
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Patriotic Poke Cake

Jello poke cake

It’s almost time for the 4th of July and if you’re anything like me you hardly need the holiday to make a dessert. I love making a jello poke cake for the 4th of July because I always associates poke cakes with summers and being a kid. Food seems to connect us back.

Jello poke cake

This is a simple enough recipe. You prepare a box of white cake mix (or your favorite recipe) into two round pans, bake, and cool. You can poke holes in the cakes with straws or toothpicks- I like to mix it up. Then you chill the whole thing before assembling with cool whip as your frosting.

Jello poke cake

Patriotic Poke Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 (9-inch) round white cake layers, baked and cooled
  • 2 cups boiling water, divided
  • 1 pkg. (3 oz.) JELL-O Strawberry Jello
  • 1 pkg. (3 oz.) JELL-O Berry Blue Jello
  • 1 tub (8 oz.) Cool Whip, thawed

Instructions

  1. Prepare your cake if you haven't already. Bake and let cool according to box instructions.
  2. Pierce the top side of the cake with toothpicks or a straw, about 1/2 inch apart.
  3. Pour each Jello flavor into its own bowl. Add 1 cup boiling water to each bowl and stir for 2 minutes until the Jello is dissolved.
  4. Gently spoon the strawberry Jello over one cake and then spoon the berry blue Jello over the other cake. Chill cakes for 3 hours.
  5. Dip the bottom of the cake pans in warm water and gently remove the cakes from the pans. Place your blue cake on a serving plate and top with cool whip. Add the red cake and finish icing the cakes together with cool whip. Chill 1 additional hour before serving.
http://www.thehyperhouse.com/2012/06/patriotic-poke-cake/

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25 Jun
2012
Posted in: Food
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Blueberry Cheesecake

After blueberry picking and making some blueberry muffins, I still had a ton of blueberries left. I had plans to make my dad a cheesecake for Father’s Day and my husband sounded a little jealous of my dad getting a cheesecake and I had plenty of berries so I figured why not make 2?

white chocolate blueberry cheesecake

Today’s recipe focuses on the cheesecake I made my husband. He loves cheesecake and every year for Christmas I make him a raspberry cheesecake. Since I had blueberries on hand, I wanted to adapt that recipe to fit with the season. It was a bit of a test but I’m happy to report it worked out splendidly.

cheesecake-layers

To make this cheesecake, you’ll want to prepare a graham cracker crust first and freeze it while you prepare the blueberry sauce. After the sauce is cooked, let it cool while you make the cheesecake filling. Then it’s time to assemble the cheesecake. You’ll pull the crust out of the freezer and sprinkle some white chocolate chips onto the crust. Pour half the cheesecake into the springform pan. Then you’ll pour some blueberry sauce over the cheesecake and swirl it in.

cheesecake swirls

Finish by pouring the rest of the cheesecake in the pan. You can add more blueberry sauce and swirl it in or make a fun design. To make this pattern, I piped circles of sauce onto the cheesecake and swirled from the center to the outside of the cheesecake to form a firecracker pattern.

blueberry cheesecake

If you end up with blueberry sauce leftover like I did, save it and make some pancakes for breakfast. The sauce is a perfect pancake syrup and adds a lot of flavor.

White Chocolate Blueberry Cheesecake

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes

Yield: 12 slices

Serving Size: 1 slice

Ingredients

    For the Crust:
  • 1 1/2 cups graham crackers (about 9 graham crackers)
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • For the Blueberry Sauce:
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
  • For the Cheesecake:
  • 4-8 oz packages cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips

Instructions

    For the Crust:
  1. Crush 9 large graham crackers by hand or in a blender. Pour into a medium bowl and mix in 1/3 cup melted butter. Mix until well combined.
  2. Line the outside of a 9-inch springform pan with foil. Repeat until about 3 layers protect the pan.
  3. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the pan and use the bottom of a drinking glass to press the mixture flat into the pan and up the sides to form a crust. Put the crust in your freezer until the filling is done.
  4. For the Blueberry Sauce:
  5. Over medium heat, combine cold water, blueberries, and lemon juice in a small saucepan. Add in sugar and cornstarch and bring to a boil.
  6. Boil for 30 seconds while whisking. Remove from heat and strain into a bowl to remove the blueberry skins. Set the sauce aside to cool.
  7. For the Cheesecake:
  8. Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Fill a large roasting pan with 1/2 inch of water and leave it on the lower rack of your oven while the oven preheats.
  9. Use a hand mixer to combine the cream cheese, sugar, and sour cream. Mix on low until smooth and creamy. Be careful not to whip the mixture, too much air will cause the cheesecake to collapse or crack.
  10. Add the vanilla and eggs and blend just until incorporated.
  11. Pull the crust from your freezer and sprinkle the white chocolate chips into the bottom of the crust. Pour half of the cheesecake filling into the crust.
  12. Drizzle 1/4 cup of the the blueberry sauce over the surface of the filling. Use a knife to gently swirl the sauce into the cheesecake.
  13. Pour the other half of the filling into the crust. Add another 1/4 cup of sauce to the top of the cheesecake. You can pipe on a fun design or just swirl it in with a knife again.
  14. Carefully place the cheesecake into the water bath in the oven. Bake for 12 minutes at 475 degrees then turn the oven down to 350 degrees and bake another 50 minutes. You want the cheesecake to just barely turn golden brown before removing.
  15. Cool on a cooling rack for an hour, then chill in the fridge for 8 hours. After cooling, remove the springform pan from the cheesecake. Cut into 12 slices and serve with whipped cream.
http://www.thehyperhouse.com/2012/06/blueberry-cheesecake/

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20 Jun
2012
Posted in: Food
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Cherry Limaretto

One of my favorite summer drinks is a cherry limeade. Actually I love going to Sonic and grabbing any of their summer drinks and sipping on them all day long. I have a weakness that started when my brother was a carhop back in high school. It’s never really left me, I’ve just grown up a touch.

cherry limaretto

When I saw the recipe for a Cherry Limaretto on Today’s Nest, I knew I had found the perfect drink for me. A cherry limeade with some amaretto in it sounded too good to be true. There’s only a trace of alcohol in it so you don’t get too tipsy and it doesn’t overwhelm the cherry lime flavor of the drink. The drink tastes just like my favorite summer drink and it’s perfect for sipping at your next picnic.

Cherry Limaretto

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: 2 glasses

From the Fresh Nest blog

Ingredients

  • 3 ounces Amaretto
  • 3 ounces sour cherry juice
  • juice of one lime
  • ginger ale
  • ice

Instructions

  1. Fill a cocktail shaker 2/3 full with ice. Pour amaretto, cherry juice, and lime juice into shaker. Shake for 10 seconds.
  2. Fill 3 glasses with 3 ice cubes. Strain the drink into the glasses, then fill the rest of the way with ginger ale.
http://www.thehyperhouse.com/2012/06/cherry-limaretto/

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18 Jun
2012
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5 Ingredient Potato Salad

I’ve been in a mood for a picnic all year long. The 4th of July screams picnic time to me so I’m in picnic mode right now. All this week I’ll be sharing some picnic-themed projects in case you’re as excited about picnics as I am.

Baked Potato Salad

For today I’m sharing my favorite potato salad recipe. It calls for just 5 ingredients- potatoes, eggs, bacon, mustard and mayonnaise. It ends up tasting like a baked potato in salad form. You can season it to your tastes, I like some dill, pepper, and sea salt mixed into mine. This is a great recipe to make ahead the night before. The flavors do well sitting overnight and the food will be chilled just in time for your picnic.

5 Ingredient Potato Salad

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds red potatoes
  • 4 strips bacon
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

Instructions

  1. Wash the potatoes and place in a large pot. Cover with cold water and boil till soft, about 15-20 minutes. Strain the potatoes and let them cool completely.
  2. While the potatoes are cooking, fry the bacon. Let it cool and crumble into small pieces. Set aside. If your eggs aren't hard-boiled yet, this is a good time to do it. Chop the egg into small pieces.
  3. Once everything is cooled, cut the potatoes into medium-sized pieces. Mix the mayonnaise and mustard together in a large bowl. Stir in the potatoes and coat them evenly with the sauce. Add in the bacon and eggs and stir until combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
http://www.thehyperhouse.com/2012/06/5-ingredient-potato-salad/

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14 Jun
2012
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Blueberry Muffins

After I went blueberry picking I got right to work cleaning the berries so I could start using them. I had all the ingredients on-hand to make my blueberry muffins so I just jumped right in. My recipe has a sturdy enough batter that you don’t have to worry about coating fresh berries with flour to prevent sinking, the berries just stay put on their own. If you don’t have almond extract you can easily substitute vanilla.

blueberry muffins

Blueberry Muffins

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 18 muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 stick butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 cups blueberries
  • For the Topping:
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Instructions

  1. Line 18 cupcake pan spaces (or 12 regular and 12 mini cupcakes)
  2. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs one at a time, stirring after each one. Mix in almond extract.
  3. Add baking powder, salt, and half the flour and lightly mix. Pour in half the milk, stir, then the rest of the flour and milk and stir till just mixed. Fold in blueberries and spoon into cupcake liners.
  4. Stir together the sugar and nutmeg for your topping and sprinkle on each muffin.
  5. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes for regular muffins and 15 minutes for mini-muffins.
http://www.thehyperhouse.com/2012/06/blueberry-muffins/

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13 Jun
2012
Posted in: Food
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Blueberry Picking

Last week I invited my friend Wendy and her mom along with me to go blueberry picking. I had gone last year and enjoyed it so much that I wanted to go again this year.

blueberry picking

I go picking at Wind Ridge Farm in New Melle, Missouri. They also have blackberries and peaches depending on the season. They aren’t open for picking every day but they do update their website, twitter account, and facebook page to help you plan your next pick date. This method ensures that the plants aren’t overpicked and that guests have plenty of picking options.

blueberry picking

When we arrived this year we could see the blueberries hanging off the bushes before we even entered the field. You just grab a bucket, listen as an employee tells you the best places to pick, and have at it. We spent less than an hour picking casually and ended up with about 2 1/2 pounds each. The blueberries are $2.99/lb and they even take credit cards if you have your whole family out there picking.

blueberry picking

Their next pick date is on Sunday from 8 AM to noon or until the field is all picked. You could celebrate Father’s Day with some blueberries or even some blackberries since they will have a small batch of them ready to go. After we went picking we did a scenic drive along Missouri’s wine country. There are several wineries out in the area so if you time it right you could pick one day and stop for some lunch at a winery before shopping (like we did).

blueberries

I’ve been planning out all sorts of delicious blueberry treats since I saw the fields were open and you can see them and other berry treats on my Berry Picking pinterest board. Coming up tomorrow I’ll show you my first cooking project or you can check out my favorite blueberry buckle recipe on my travel site.

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11 Jun
2012
Posted in: Food
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Milkiest Chocolate Ice Cream

Jeni's chocolate-ice-cream

I’m back with another Jeni’s ice cream recipe. After making Salty Caramel ice cream, I wanted to try a flavor that was much more simple. A classic chocolate recipe sounded perfect. I decided to try the recipe for The Milkiest Chocolate in the World Ice Cream.

I don’t want to keep republishing all of Jeni’s recipes since I think her book deserves the credit and it explains a lot of the process in it but I will show you the ingredients and say the process is very similar to that of the first recipe I tried. One note, Jeni’s recipe in the book has a small typo so make sure to check her website for updates to the book. In this case you need 1 1/4 cup of cream instead of the 1/4 cup that is printed in the book.

ice-cream-ingredients

In this recipe you don’t use cream cheese, instead you use evaporated milk. Jeni explains that the goal is to keep the chocolate taste more pure which I’d say she accomplished in this recipe. The change in ingredients leaves the ice cream tasting a little sweeter too. My husband described the flavor as chocolate ice cream in a waffle cone. That enhancement made this ice cream taste anything but simple. I wished in a way that the flavor had more distractions because chocolate was the star and a whole bowl might be a tad overwhelming.

ice cream churn

The only problem I’d say exists with this recipe is how thick it gets. With cocoa, cornstarch, and chocolate there’s a lot of chance for clumps to form in the ice cream. To remedy this I suggest sifting the cocoa before you add it to the pot. Then run the ice cream base through a sieve first as you add it to the chocolate and again as you put it in its chilling bag. You want this ice cream to be as smooth as possible to get the purest taste. Also, Jeni suggests freezing this ice cream for at least 4 hours but I’d recommend going overnight. The ice cream really solidifies and the flavors enhance overnight. I know waiting is hard but trust me, it’s worth it.

chocolate-ice-cream

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4 Jun
2012
Posted in: Food
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Pesto Chicken Skewers

chicken pesto skewers

In the summer there’s nothing better than throwing food on the grill and eating leftovers for days. Just because I like to eat some tasty food doesn’t mean I don’t love an effortless meal. When I saw the idea of these Pesto Chicken Skewers that La Kocinera shared, I knew I had to try them.

chicken pesto skewers

To prep for this recipe I soaked 7 skewers in water so they wouldn’t catch fire on the grill. I also pulled out 3 of my frozen pesto cubes to thaw during the day. The only other ingredients you’ll need are 2 chicken breasts and a half pint of grape tomatoes. Just cut up the chicken into bite-sized pieces and alternate the pieces on the skewer with the tomatoes. Brush on some pesto and grill until the chicken is done. That’s it! It’s so easy you barely even need a recipe.

chicken pesto skewers

I served this recipe with some sirloin skewers and some of my frozen twice-baked potatoes along with a salad. Like I said, my goal is to eat off a meal for days and we had a weekend’s worth of food with this meal.

Pesto Chicken Skewers

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 7 skewers

Recipe from La Kocinera

Ingredients

  • 2 boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 pint grape tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup prepared pesto

Instructions

  1. If using wooden skewers, soak in water for at least 20 minutes to prevent burning on the grill.
  2. Alternate sliding chicken pieces and grape tomatoes onto your skewers. Brush with pesto.
  3. Heat your grill to a medium heat and cook about 5 minutes per side until the chicken juices run clear.
http://www.thehyperhouse.com/2012/06/pesto-chicken-skewers/

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29 May
2012
Posted in: Food
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BLT Salad

My current job has me working later than my husband. He gets home about an hour before I do and our dinner time has shifted an hour later than it used to be.  Our meal planning has changed around. I now prep meals the night before or when I stop in during my lunch break as I often do. We’re really utilizing all those freezer meals I’ve stocked up on and we’re taking advantage of the crockpot too. Some nights we just want a quick and filling meal without all the work so that way we can switch to project mode as soon as our plates are clean.

BLT Salad

That’s where the BLT salad comes in. If you like BLTs then this salad is almost a clone of your favorite sandwich. You can make croutons from old bread ahead of time; just drizzle some olive oil, salt, and pepper over some diced bread and bake for 20 minutes at 375 degrees. They stay crunchy and fresh for days but if you make them fresh then they’ll be chewy just like the bread of a BLT. Then you’ll toss some bacon, lettuce, and grape tomatoes together with those croutons. Last up is the dressing; the combination of mayonnaise and buttermilk is the perfect touch for the salad. Just toss and serve with some french bread. If you’re a little hungrier, serve this salad with some soup or a sandwich, maybe even a BLT if that’s not a BLT overload.

BLT Salad

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients

    For the croutons:
  • 1/2 baguette, sliced into cubes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • For the dressing:
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 3 Tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons cider vinegar
  • For the salad:
  • 1 pound romaine, chopped
  • 1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

Instructions

  1. Start by making sure your bacon is cooked. You can do this on the stovetop or in the oven with the croutons by baking for 15 minutes.
  2. For the croutons:
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Toss bread with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  4. Spread evenly on a baking sheet and bake until golden, around 20 minutes.
  5. For the dressing:
  6. In a medium bowl whisk together buttermilk, mayonnaise, Parmesan cheese and vinegar.
  7. For the salad:
  8. In a large bowl, mix together lettuce, tomatoes, and croutons. Toss with dressing, sprinkle with bacon and serve.
http://www.thehyperhouse.com/2012/05/blt-salad/

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