Melissa's Cuisine: July 2011

Friday, July 29, 2011

Pepperoni Pizza Monkey Bread

As you all know, we are big pizza lovers.  While we love a good ol' fashioned slice of pizza, it's also fun to mix it up and try new ways to eat our favorite food.  We also love monkey bread and for some reason, I thought to combine the idea of monkey bread and pizza.  Mike thought I was crazy when I told him I was making pizza monkey bread (the thought of cinnamon and sugar with pizza didn't appeal to him!), but we both really enjoyed the end result!
You will need:

4 cans buttermilk biscuits
1/2 cup pizza sauce
40 slices of pepperoni
8 oz shredded mozzarella cheese
4 Tablespoons margarine, melted
Garlic salt

1.  Use your palm to flatten biscuits into an oval.

2.  Place a small amount of pizza sauce, a slice of pepperoni and some cheese in the center of the biscuits and then fold up to form a ball around the filling.

3.  Dip each dough ball in melted margarine before placing in a greased pan.

4.  Repeat with each biscuit.  Sprinkle garlic salt over each layer of biscuits as you put them in the pan.

5.  Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes, until dough is cooked all the way through.  Serve with warmed pizza sauce on the side, if desired.

I had to show you this picture of what I used to bake the monkey bread.  Since this is the second recipe I've made recently that would be better with a bundt pan (remember my rounded angel food cake?), I think I better make work of getting one soon!

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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Berry Trifle

I made this dessert to bring to my parent's house for Sunday dinner.  I spent Saturday afternoon making the angel food cake and cream, and washing and cutting the berries.  After church on Sunday we pulled into my parent's driveway and...no-one was home!  Apparently we miscommunicated and they were still in Canada (we thought they were coming home Saturday)!  So Mike and I went home and enjoyed this delicious treat together.  It was so good he requested it again the next day!  This is a great summer dessert and we'll be making it again and again.

You will need:
1 angel food cake
1 8oz container Cool Whip
1 5.1oz box instant Vanilla pudding
1 Tablespoon milk
Strawberries
Blueberries

1.  Beat together Cool Whip, vanilla pudding, and milk until well combined.

2.  Cut Angel Food cake into 1-inch pieces.

3.  In a large trifle bowl, or smaller individual bowls, layer cake, pudding mixture, and blueberries.  Then top with cake, pudding mixture, and strawberries.  Continuing layers as needed.

Serve immediately or refrigerate until you're ready to serve.  This would be great with other berries as well!

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Saturday, July 23, 2011

Angel Food Cake

Summer fruit is fresh and sweet at our local farmer's market.  The bright red strawberries always seem to catch my eye.  Mike and I both love strawberries, so when they're in season we always have them in the house.  I think strawberries with a slice of angel food cake make the perfect summer dessert, not to heavy or to sweet, just perfect!
You will need:
1 cup sifted flour (I used all-purpose but the original recipe recommends cake flour)
1-1/4 cups sugar, divided
10 egg whites
1-1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla

1.  Combine flour and 1/4 cup sugar and set aside.

2.  Beat egg whites with a mixer on high speed until foamy.  Add cream of tartar and salt and continue beating until soft peaks form.  Add remaining sugar, a small amount at a time, until stiff peaks form.

3.  Add 1/4 cup of the flour/sugar mixture to the egg whites and gently fold in using a spoon.  Add remaining flour 1/4 cup at a time.  Fold in vanilla.

4.  Spoon batter into a lightly greased tube pan (I don't have one, so I used  my donut cake pan, which is why my cake is slightly rounded).  Bake at 350 for 40 minutes, or until cake springs back when lightly touched.

Invert cake onto a plate to serve.  Next week I'll be sharing a recipe to use angel food cake in!



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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Chicken Alfredo-2 ways

Mike and I are both huge fans of chicken alfredo.  In fact, when we were dating it was one of the first meals I made for him.  He came over to my parent's house for dinner and I did my best to make a good impression!  Unfortunately, I messed something up because the alfredo sauce was way too salty!  We all did our best to eat what we could, but it was the worst alfredo I've ever had.  Mike must have liked something though, because he stuck around! 

Don't worry, this recipe isn't too salty.  What I like about chicken alfredo is how versatile it can be.  Mike and I invited both of our families over for a Sunday dinner and I planned to make chicken alfredo.  I knew I wouldn't have time to make it after church, and before everyone arrived, so I actually made the alfredo the night before.  I then put it into a casserole pan and the next day we just had to heat it up before eating.  If you don't want to do the casserole version, you can also serve this alfredo normally, with the sauce poured over the noodles.  Either way, it still tastes great!

You will need:
2 cups chicken stock
1 cup milk
3 Tablespoons flour
1 Tablespoon garlic powder
salt, season to taste
4 chicken breasts, cooked (cut into strips if you're serving the alfredo the traditional way, diced if you're making the casserole)
1 box of linguini noodles

1.  Fill a large saucepan with water and bring it to a boil.  Add linguini noodles and boil for 7 minutes if you're making the casserole, 10 minutes if you're going traditional.  Drain and set aside.

2.  In a small saucepan, combine chicken stock and milk.  Bring to a simmer. 

3.  Remove about 1/2 a cup of the chicken stock/milk mixture from the pan and pour it into a small bowl.  Add flour and stir to make a thin paste.  Pour the paste into the saucepan with the remaining chicken stock/milk.

4.  Stir garlic powder, salt, and pepper into sauce.  Stir frequently until sauce thickens.

If you're making traditional chicken alfredo, serve the linguini noodles topped with alfredo sauce with strips of chicken on top or on the side.

If you're making chicken alfredo casserole, pour the sauce into a greased casserole pan.  Add noodles and chicken and stir to combine.  Now you can freeze the casserole (cover securely and freeze up to a month), refrigerate overnight (or until you're ready to bake), or bake immediately.  If frozen or refrigerated, let the casserole thaw first or lengthen the baking time.  Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes, until noodles are heated through.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Banana Muffins

One fruit we always have in the house is bananas.  Mike and I both eat at least one a day, his is in his lunch and I eat mine before working out each morning.  We have one of those nifty green containers that prolongs the life of produce, and I really think it works!  My bananas stay spot-less much longer in the container than on the counter.  However, I have found that the hotter and more humid it is, the faster my bananas go bad.  That's not always a bad thing though, because it gives me the perfect excuse to bake banana foods!

I made this recipe as part of the Secret Recipe Club that is put together each month by Amanda from Amanda's Cooking.  Each month participants are assigned to another blog and we choose a recipe to make and feature on our blog.  It's all a secret until the day of the posting--today! This is my first time participating and I was assigned to Foodness Gracious.  There are so many fantastic recipes on this blog, but due to my overabundance of bananas, I settled on making his recipe for banana muffins, which he aptly named Bananadrama.  I thought these were delicious, and I loved the added flavor and crunch from the almonds.  I'll definitely be making these again!
You will need:

1-3/4 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
dash of nutmeg
1/3 cup ground almonds (I used whole almonds and ground them in my food processor)
1/3 cup brown sugar
2-3 large ripe bananas (I used 3)
2 eggs
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk
3 tbsp honey/agave (I used honey)

1.  Sift flour, baking powder and cinnamon into a bowl.

2.  Stir in nutmeg, sugar and almonds.

3.  Mash bananas in another bowl and add eggs, oil, milk, and honey.

4.  Add to dry ingredients and stir until just mixed.

5.  Spoon into muffin trays and bake in a 375 oven for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when stuck in the middle.




Be sure to check out the other participant's recipes!


Friday, July 15, 2011

Bacon Ranch Potato Salad

Growing up, potato salad was a necessary side to any grilled meal.  Burgers, steak, chicken, you name it, if it was hot and we were grilling or having a picnic, you could count on having potato salad served!  When I saw this recipe for Bacon Ranch Potato Salad, I knew we would have to try it!  Mike and I both love bacon and I thought it would be the perfect addition to a cook-out!

We thought the potato salad was good, but it just seemed to lack a punch to me.  One thing I did differently than the original recipe was using dried herbs instead of fresh.  I think fresh herbs would add more flavor than dried, but I had to work with what I had!  I'll share the original recipe though, using fresh herbs.

You will need:
2 pounds red potatoes, unpeeled and cut into 1/2 inch chunks
1 Tablespoon salt
1/4 cup mayonaise
1/4 cup sour cream
2-3 Tablespoons chopped chives
2-3 Tablespoons chopped parsley
1 small green onion
1 clove minced garlic
1-1/2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup buttermilk
Black pepper
Pinch of salt
4 slices of bacon, cooked to a crisp and crumbled

1.  In a medium pan, cover potatoes with water and add 1 Tablespoon salt.  Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are tender (about 10 minutes).

2.  In a small bowl, whisk together mayo, sour cream, chives, parsley, onion, garlic, lemon juice, and buttermilk.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Refrigerate until you're ready to use.

3.  When potatoes are done, drain and set aside for about 10 minutes, until they are no longer steaming hot.

4.  Pour half the dressing over potatoes and gently stir.  Refrigerate at least an hour before serving.

5.  Just before serving, toss with remaining dressing and crumbled bacon.  Serve cold.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Cookie Dough and Chocolate Stuffed Cinnamon Rolls

Do you ever get sick of making the same thing time after time?  Maybe you don't, but I do, and sometimes I like to experiment and try new and exciting ideas.  This was one of those times.  Don't get me wrong, I love cinnamon rolls, but I was wanting something different.  I'd already made funfetti cinnamon rolls and loved them so I thought why not take it another direction?  I decided to stuff my cinnamon rolls with ready to eat cookie dough or chocolate chips.  Both were delicious and a nice twist on the ordinary cinnamon roll!

You can easily make a full batch of each, cookie dough stuffed, or chocolate chip stuffed.  I made a full batch of cinnamon rolls and divided the fillings between each half.  Does that make sense?  If you need more clarification, I know the recipe is a little confusing, please let me know so I can help make it more clear!


You will need:

For the cinnamon rolls:
2 cups milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup sugar
1 packet yeast (2-1/4 teaspoons)
4-1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 stick margarine
cinnamon
sugar
1 batch ready to eat cookie dough
2 cups chocolate chips

For the icing:
Cookie Dough Icing
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup cookie dough
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 Tablespoons milk

Chocolate topping
1 cup chocolate chips


1. Mix the milk, oil, and sugar in a large pot. Scald milk mixture and then let it cool to room temperature.

2. Sprinkle yeast over milk mixture and let it sit for a couple minutes.

3. Stir in 4 cups of flour to form a sticky dough. Cover pan and let the dough rise for 1 hour.

4. After dough has risen, stir in remaining 1/2 cup of flour, baking powder, and baking soda until well combined.

5. Divide dough in half. On a flour covered workplace (I use my counter), roll the dough out until it's about 1/8" thick and in a rectangular shape about 18 inches long and 12 inches wide.

6. Melt margarine in a glass measuring cup (or a small bowl). Pour half of the melted margarine over the dough. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon (the amount is up to you, I used less cinnamon so the other flavors would really shine through). Now top with either spoonfuls of cookie dough or chocolate chips.

7. Roll dough in a line toward you. Cut into 3/4 inch slices. (I use dental floss to cut my cinnamon rolls, but a sharp knife works well too.) Place in a greased pan.

8. Repeat this process with the other half of the dough.

9. Let the cinnamon rolls rise for 30 minutes. Then bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes.

10. While rolls are in the oven, mix together ingredients for icing.  If you're making cookie dough icing, melt the cookie dough in the microwave for about 30 seconds before blending with the powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk.  If you're using the chocolate, just melt it in the microwave and pour over rolls. 

11.  Let the rolls cool for about 5 minutes before icing. 


Cookie Dough Stuffed Cinnamon Rolls


Chocolate Chip Stuffed Cinnamon Rolls

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Sunday, July 10, 2011

Pepperoni Pizza Bread

Mike and I eat a lot of pizza: homemade, take-out, mini pizzas, pizza bites, pizza casserole...if it's pizza, we like it!  When I saw this idea for pizza bread, I knew it would have to be put into our menu rotation.  I'm so glad we did!  It was so easy to put together, and paired with a salad it makes a great dinner.  Mike's mom stopped by right after we finished eating and she said the house smelled so good, she just had to have a piece, we gave her one and she liked it so much I had to give her the recipe right then!


You will need:

1 cup flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 eggs
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
1 1/2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese
1 cup quartered pepperoni slices (about 32 slices)
1/2 cup marinara sauce
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1. Place flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pepper into the bowl of a stand or electric mixer, mix to combine.

2. Slowly add in eggs, oil, buttermilk, 1/4 cup Parmesan, Mozzarella and pepperoni until just combined.

3. Pour half of batter into a greased bread pan.

4. Top evenly with marinara sauce and then pour remaining batter over sauce.

5. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and remaining Parmesan cheese.

6. Bake at 350 for 45-55 minutes or until toothpick comes clean from center.  Let cool for 30 minutes before removing from pan.  Slice and serve warm or room temperature.
Source: Picky Palate

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