Friday, October 31, 2014

BACON CHEESECAKE CASSEROLE for a CROWD (Quiche Lorraine) - 52 Church PotLuck Breakfast


Lately I have been all about feeding a crowd.  Which makes this a timely post for all the overnight guests you may have for the upcoming holiday seasons.  I can get 20 servings from a single 9X13 Casserole Dish from this recipe.  The pan is cut in half the long way, then cut into 1 inch bars making a serving 1 X 4-1/2.

You can easily do all the prep work (Cook the bacon, Mix the eggs and 1/2&1/2, make and par-bake the crust) the day before.  Then with just a few minutes work plus baking time you can serve this up warm.

BUT, even better you can just bake the whole thing the day before and offer these chilled... A Quiche tastes great chilled, room temp and warm.

This recipe is a classic Quiche Lorraine turned into a casserole.  OOZing with Swiss Cheese, LOADED (don;t be stingy) with BACON and the rich Egg Custard on a pie crust.

Add a plate of fruit and maybe a mini-muffin or two and your guests will think you were up all night baking!

Easy Fast Filling Impressive... Great for a Catering job, a BIG Breakfast or any Pass a Plate PotLuck Occasion!


OK... Here's what I did...

BACON CHEESECAKE CASSEROLE
For a Crowd (Shhh... It's a Quiche Lorraine)


Ingredients
  • 1 - Scratch Made Pie Crust Recipe (See Recipe Below)
  • 1 Pound Thick Slice Bacon, sliced into 1 inch pieces and fried
  • 4 Cups (2 - 8 Ounce Bricks) Gruyere Cheese (buy the brick cheese and fresh grate)
  • 4 Cups Half and Half
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 10 Large Eggs, slightly beaten
Cooking Directions
  1. Prepare your ingredients, Par-Bake your pie shell (400 degrees for about 8 -10 minutes until it just starts to brown. This is important to avoid a soggy crust). Fry the bacon (easier to fry after you slice the raw bacon into pieces). In a large bowl, break all the eggs and whip slightly. Grate the cheese.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  3. Add the Half and Half and salt to the beaten eggs and whip until smooth and evenly colored, thoroughly mixed.
  4. Line the bottom of each pie shell with the grated cheese, evenly divided.
  5. Top this cheese with the bacon, again evenly divided.
  6. Add the milky egg mix on top of the cheesy bacon to the top of the pie shell.
  7. Move to the oven and bake for 30 to 40 minutes until the top just starts to brown.
  8. Quiche can be served warm (allow it to rest for 30 minutes before slicing), room temperature (perfect for a brunch buffet) or chilled from the fridge.
  9. If you want to freeze one and serve one, Freezing instructions... Chill for several hours in the refrigerator. Wrap TIGHTLY with cling wrap, then with aluminum foil. Date and freeze for no more than 60 days. When reheating, thaw first, then reheat in the oven, NEVER the microwave (or crust will get soggy). 450 for 20-30 minutes.
  10. And tell the quiche-phobic that you are serving BACON CHEESECAKE and ENJOY!
Secrets to a Scratch  
PERFECT PIE CRUST for a Casserole Dish 

Ingredients
  • MAKES TWO PIE CRUSTS or ONE Crust for ONE 9X13 Casserole Dish...
  • 1-1/4 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 Cup (2 Sticks) Unsalted COLD Butter
  • 5 TBS COLD (iced) water
  • Non-stick spray (Like Pam)
Cooking Directions
  1. Add the flour, salt and sugar to the bowl of a food processor and process to mix.
  2. Prepare the next items, butter should be cold (prefer from freezer) and water in a cup with a couple of ice cubes to keep it cold, cold, cold.
  3. With the machine running, add butter 1 TBS at a time, count to three and add the next TBS of butter. Continue to process until dough resembles small pebbles like wet sand, only 5-10 seconds.
  4. With the machine still running, add the COLD COLD Water one TBS at a time. In just a few seconds a dough ball will begin to form. Stop the processor now.
  5. Prepare your "Rolling area", a place to form the flat circle of crust. This si simple, just a piece of cling wrap (Saran Wrap) laid out flat on a counter. It is important that the wrap be at least 4 inches wider than the pie plate. use an extra overlapping piece of wrap if needed. Then dump the dough ball and all crumbs from the processor onto the center of the cling wrap.
  6. Press the ball and crumbs together and form a flat ball. Press the ball and begin to flatten out into a circle. Add a top layer of cling wrap on top of the now flattened ball. Use a roller and begin rolling the dough into a flat circle or a large 10X14 rectangle. As the dough is flattened it may begin to separate. Just add some of the edges to cover the breaks and continue to roll out. Roll until the dough circle is 2 inches beyond the edge of the pie plate or an inch larger all around the casserole pan. Gently but firmly roll until crust is even thickness.
  7. Remove top layer of cling wrap and place pie plate or casserole pan on center of the dough circle or rectangle.
  8. OK.... Here's the tricky part (first couple of times, once you get used to it, it becomes second nature easy)... lift each corner of the bottom cling wrap up to break the seal on the counter top. Now reach your hand under the cling wrap to the center of the pie plate (that is still resting on the center of the crust). Put your other hand on the top (the bottom) of the plate Lift up and QUICKLY flip everything so the pie plate or dish is now on the bottom, the dough is centered on the plate or dish and beginning to settle. There will be ripples of dough, but everything should be on the plate with some hangover all the way around.
  9. Trim the edges.  For the Casserole, just be sure the bottom is covered. trim anything climbing the sides.  For the pie plates... With your thumbs, push the dough 1/8-inch above the edge of the mold, to make an even, rounded rim of dough around the inside circumference of the mold. You can then press a decorative edge around the rim of the pastry with the dull edge of a knife. Prick the bottom of the pastry with a fork at 1/2-inch intervals to prevent air bubbles from forming as you par-bake the crust.
  10. To par-bake, bake crust in a preheated 400 degree oven for 9-10 minutes, until crust just starts to darken in color. If you are going to bake the finished pie (Fruit pies, quiches, etc. you are ready to move on to the next step. If you are making a cold pie (like banana cream:, bake for an additional 5 minutes.
  11. Fill and bake (or chill) as directed for the pie of your choice! And when done... ENJOY!

******************************************************

This simple recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Breakfast Ideas!"

It's the most important meal of the day.  From fancy to simple, there are always ways to dress up a breakfast dish.  These are the meals that make Bed and Breakfast Inns legendary (and usually easier than you think).

Here's your chance to make your guests Ooh and Aah!
******************************************************

This recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Church PotLuck Dishes"!

A list of something NEW worthy of being shown off at a neighborhood BYODish (Bring Your Own Dish) Party, a Family special occasion dinner, Any Big Holiday Gathering or of course that glorious day when you bring a dish to share with your Church family...

Ages ago, literally almost a half century ago I was listening to our pastor talking about a PotLuck Dinner. It happened to be scheduled around a church work day when we were expected to weed, polish and do general cleaning and maintenance around the church (you know, back in the day when there were no no-wax floors and church pews smelled of Old English furniture polish). I am of course paraphrasing, but as I recall the pastor said,

"A potluck, like a church requires work. At a potluck everyone is expected to contribute.. At a church no one should come empty handed and no one should leave unfed".
I will confess that in my youth I brought more store bought plastic spoons and forks than I ever brought covered dishes and crock pots of fresh made love and caring delights. But now that I have become a hobbyist cook, I occasionally am reminded of those days and people from my youth. I reminded and I do wish that I could drop a dish of some new creation on those old tables at my fondly remembered Liberty Baptist Church.  Tables covered with newspapers and loaded with God's bounty prepared with love and caring... Enjoy

***********************PINTEREST*********************

Come and find me on Pinterest... Any of my "52 Ways to cook" Boards are worth following.  If you like this post, please take a second and "Pin" this to your own boards... Better yet, if you are part of a foodie group board please take a second and add this post to your group pins... best way to show your Love!

And BTW, if you are not yet part of a group board, drop me an email at Contact@eRecipeCards.com and request to be added to my group board... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! (be sure to include your pinterest ID when you write)  Once you are added, any pins you add will be seen by 10s of THOUSANDS of followers of the board (and growing daily).

Rules, only 2... 
  1. In order to join you need to start following the group board as well as at least one of my boards.
  2. And you must ONLY pin original sources, posts from food related bloggers only.  If you are a blogger, this is a great way to have thousands of potential readers see your work,  If you are a fan of bloggers, a great way to share your favorites...
    Come and be a part of ... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! on Pinterest

Thursday, October 30, 2014

APPLE PIE Mini-Muffins - 52 Church PotLuck Breakfast Catering Recipes


The Magical Allure of the Mini-Muffin!!!

Perfect size for snacking, wonderful size as an add on to a breakfast... Easy and Fast to make a BUNCH, making them perfect to offer as a Catering option.

And best of all... THESE ARE AMAZING!  Loaded with Apples for a natural sweetness, spices to remind you of an apple pie.

And aren't those Walnuts on the top beautiful!

LOVE THESE!


OK... Here's what I did...

APPLE PIE Mini-Muffins

Ingredients
  • 2 Cups Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 large Pinch Sea Salt
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 2 Cups Sugar
  • 4 Large Eggs
  • 1-1/3rd Cups Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 1-1/2 Cups Walnut Halves (Can use Walnut Pieces)
  • 3 Cups (about 7 Small or 3 Large)Apples, Peeled, Diced
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
Cooking Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 375.  Prepare mini muffin tins with non stick spray
  2. In a Large Bowl, combine the dry ingredients - Flour, Baking Soda, Sea Salt, Cinnamon and Sugar.
  3. In a Separate Bowl, whisk together Eggs, Olive Oil and Vanilla.
  4. Gradually add the wet ingredients to the dry. Fold until just combined, do not over mix.
  5. Add Apples (if you are using Walnut pieces and not the larger Walnut Halves, go ahead and mix the pieces in as well) and again, Fold to just Combine.  If using Walnut Halves, wait to add.
  6. Add 1 TBS of the mix into each section of the mini muffin tins.  Press 1 or 2 of the Walnut Halves into the top of the dough.
  7. Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes until a knife can be inserted and comes out dry.
  8. Allow to cool in the pans for 20 minutes, then remove from pan and cool.
  9. Store in airtight container, serve room temperature and ENJOY!

******************************************************

This recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Church PotLuck Dishes"!

A list of something NEW worthy of being shown off at a neighborhood BYODish (Bring Your Own Dish) Party, a Family special occasion dinner, Any Big Holiday Gathering or of course that glorious day when you bring a dish to share with your Church family...

Ages ago, literally almost a half century ago I was listening to our pastor talking about a PotLuck Dinner. It happened to be scheduled around a church work day when we were expected to weed, polish and do general cleaning and maintenance around the church (you know, back in the day when there were no no-wax floors and church pews smelled of Old English furniture polish). I am of course paraphrasing, but as I recall the pastor said,

"A potluck, like a church requires work. At a potluck everyone is expected to contribute.. At a church no one should come empty handed and no one should leave unfed".
I will confess that in my youth I brought more store bought plastic spoons and forks than I ever brought covered dishes and crock pots of fresh made love and caring delights. But now that I have become a hobbyist cook, I occasionally am reminded of those days and people from my youth. I reminded and I do wish that I could drop a dish of some new creation on those old tables at my fondly remembered Liberty Baptist Church.  Tables covered with newspapers and loaded with God's bounty prepared with love and caring... Enjoy

***********************PINTEREST*********************

Come and find me on Pinterest... Any of my "52 Ways to cook" Boards are worth following.  If you like this post, please take a second and "Pin" this to your own boards... Better yet, if you are part of a foodie group board please take a second and add this post to your group pins... best way to show your Love!

And BTW, if you are not yet part of a group board, drop me an email at Contact@eRecipeCards.com and request to be added to my group board... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! (be sure to include your pinterest ID when you write)  Once you are added, any pins you add will be seen by 10s of THOUSANDS of followers of the board (and growing daily).

Rules, only 2... 
  1. In order to join you need to start following the group board as well as at least one of my boards.
  2. And you must ONLY pin original sources, posts from food related bloggers only.  If you are a blogger, this is a great way to have thousands of potential readers see your work,  If you are a fan of bloggers, a great way to share your favorites...
    Come and be a part of ... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! on Pinterest

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

HUMMUS Pinwheels - BBQ/Garlic Apple, Grape and Onion - 5 Minutes - 52 Appetizers Recipes


Ahhh... The joy of the pinwheel "Sandwich".

Easy and FAST to make.  They can be loaded up with lots of things (Like the Cream Cheese and Sun Dried Tomato Pesto ones to the left).  As a caterer I like to offer various ones as a vegetarian option.  They are always welcome at any pass a plate potluck occasion.  Dramatic looking and delicious!

This particular version uses fresh made hummus (incredibly easy, open a can, add just a couple of spices and oil and you have Hummus!), see the recipe.  Hummus is like a blank canvas for flavors.  You can use about any spices you might like.  This time I decided I wanted to make a sweet sandwich with sweet stuffings but add a bit of a kick with a BBQ Spice mix.

Sweet and Heat, a fantastic combination!

The "How To" of making a pinwheel is pretty simple...

Lay out a Tortilla.

Spread the Hummus (be generous)

Top with the Fixins (top in rows like shown or as a mix)

The only slightly difficult part is the roll up.  Roll up tight so they hold together.

Refrigerate for a couple of hours and then slice...

And enjoy!


OK... Here's what I did...


HUMMUS Pinwheel - BBQ/Garlic
Fast and Easy - 5 Minutes 


Ingredients
  • 1 Can (15 OZ) Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans), Drained
  • 3 Large Cloves Garlic, Peeled, crushed and minced
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 1 tsp BBQ Spice Mix (to Taste)
  • Juice and Zest of 1 Medium Lemon
  • 3 TBS Olive Oil
  • 3 or 4 Burrito size Tortillas
  • FOR TOPPINGS (STUFFINGS)
    1 Apple Cored and Minced
  • 1/2 Red Onion, Minced
  • 10 Seedless Grapes, Minced
Cooking Directions
  1. In the bowl of a Food Processor, Add the drained Chickpeas, Minced Garlic, Cumin, BBQ Spice Mix, Lemon Zest and Juice and the Olive Oil. Process for 10 seconds, scrape down the sides of the bowl and process for another 5 seconds. Hummus should be the consistency of a thick milk shake. Add additional Lemon Juice or Olive Oil to reach correct texture.
  2. Lay out a Tortilla on a cutting boar. Spread about 1/4th of the Hummus in an even coating over the entire Tortilla.
  3. Add a line of minced Red Onions about 1 inch thick, repeat with a line of Apples and another line of Grapes, repeat until you reach the end of the tortilla.
  4. With that lines of stuffing parallel to you, begin rolling from the bottom. Tight but not pressing too tight. Once you have the tortilla rolled into a log put it in the refrigerator for an hour for the Hummus to set.
  5. Repeat with the remaining tortillas.
  6. Slice each Tortilla log into a dozen same size slices (about 1/3rd inch each). Discard (or cook's treat) the ends that do not look pretty, plate and return to the refrigerator until ready to serve.
  7. Serve chilled and ENJOY!

******************************************************

This recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Church PotLuck Dishes"!

A list of something NEW worthy of being shown off at a neighborhood BYODish (Bring Your Own Dish) Party, a Family special occasion dinner, Any Big Holiday Gathering or of course that glorious day when you bring a dish to share with your Church family...

Ages ago, literally almost a half century ago I was listening to our pastor talking about a PotLuck Dinner. It happened to be scheduled around a church work day when we were expected to weed, polish and do general cleaning and maintenance around the church (you know, back in the day when there were no no-wax floors and church pews smelled of Old English furniture polish). I am of course paraphrasing, but as I recall the pastor said,

"A potluck, like a church requires work. At a potluck everyone is expected to contribute.. At a church no one should come empty handed and no one should leave unfed".
I will confess that in my youth I brought more store bought plastic spoons and forks than I ever brought covered dishes and crock pots of fresh made love and caring delights. But now that I have become a hobbyist cook, I occasionally am reminded of those days and people from my youth. I reminded and I do wish that I could drop a dish of some new creation on those old tables at my fondly remembered Liberty Baptist Church.  Tables covered with newspapers and loaded with God's bounty prepared with love and caring... Enjoy

***********************PINTEREST*********************

Come and find me on Pinterest... Any of my "52 Ways to cook" Boards are worth following.  If you like this post, please take a second and "Pin" this to your own boards... Better yet, if you are part of a foodie group board please take a second and add this post to your group pins... best way to show your Love!

And BTW, if you are not yet part of a group board, drop me an email at Contact@eRecipeCards.com and request to be added to my group board... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! (be sure to include your pinterest ID when you write)  Once you are added, any pins you add will be seen by 10s of THOUSANDS of followers of the board (and growing daily).

Rules, only 2... 
  1. In order to join you need to start following the group board as well as at least one of my boards.
  2. And you must ONLY pin original sources, posts from food related bloggers only.  If you are a blogger, this is a great way to have thousands of potential readers see your work,  If you are a fan of bloggers, a great way to share your favorites...
    Come and be a part of ... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! on Pinterest

Friday, October 24, 2014

PULLED PORK - EASIEST Tastiest Crock Pot 3 Ingredient EASY - 52 Crock Pot Easy Recipes


OH BOY PULLED PORK!

Now to be honest, I am a grill and Smoker guy.  I am one of those guys with a gas grill, I have three Weber Kettle Grills, a Smoker and even a couple of old ones that I just can't part with in my garage (sorry honey, I'll clean it out one day)... but I digress.

Occasionally I have a need for that unique taste without all the fuss of smoking.

This comes very very close and is very very good (and very very easy).

Meat spices and beer... just that easy.

Trimming the meat is the only challenging part... And even that is optional.  I like to trim the fat cap (there will be a layer of about 1/2 an inch or more of fat on the top side of a pork shoulder) before I cook in a slow cooker,  You could trim after cooking and before shredding.  The cap just pulls off then.  But trimming before allows more of the flavors of the beer to absorb into the meat and less fat in the reserve liquid at the end.

Be sure to add the skimmed reserve liquid before serving (think Au Jus for a prime rib).  Makes the meat glow, glisten and reinforces that deep rich flavor.

PERFECT for a big gathering, serving as sliders, garnish with a few pickle slices, some cole slaw and a favorite  BBQ sauce and you have something special with just a few minutes of hands on work!

 As to the beer.  Use something with lots of flavor (No Lite Beer please)/  The alcohol does cook out as the meat simmers in the juices.  No one will get a buzz from these.  The ingredients in the beer are perfect to add layers of flavors into the meat.

I chose my home town brewery, Boulevard Brewing Company and their Boulevard Wheat beer.  Hints of Citrus and a sweet bready malt flavoring.

Enjoy indeed!


OK... Here's what I did...


3 Ingredient Pulled Pork


Ingredients
  • 1 (8 Pound) Pork Butt (May be labeled Pork shoulder)
  • 6 Ounces Your favorite Beer (I used Boulevard Wheat)
  • 1/4 Cup Your Favorite BBQ Spice Rub
Cooking Directions
  1. Trim your Pork Butt. Slice off the fat cap from the top of the meat, leaving thin stripes of fat but not too much. Any exposed fat is trimmed to within a small fraction of an inch to the meat.
  2. Rub the Spice Rub into the meat side of the Butt (side opposite the trimmed fat cap).
  3. Fill the bottom of a 5-6 quart Slow Cooker with 1 inch worth of Beer.
  4. Put Butt into the cooker, set on low and cook for about 10-12 hours with cover on... NO PEAKING, releases a lot of heat and changes the cooking time.
  5. After 10 hours, check internal temperature. The pork is done when measured in several spots at 195 degrees.
  6. Remove from cooker.
  7. Skim off the fat from the liquid left in the cooker. Save 1 cup and discard the rest.
  8. Pull the pork. Using 2 forks, the pork is easily shredded.
  9. Return the meat to the cooker, mix with the reserved liquid and set the cooker on low.
  10. Serve on a slider bun with optional Pickles, Cole Slaw and your favorite BBQ sauce and ENJOY!

*************************************************************************

So,  I am pleased to list this as one of my Growing list of  "52 Cooking With BEER Recipes"!!!

Everyone knows about cooking with wine, but BEER has so much more complex flavors.  I imagine the day after beer was invented, someone made an Irish Stew. Cooking with beer infuses recipes with this intoxicating concoction of hops and barley in an effort to enhance and enrich everyday food..  Come take a look, sure to have something you might like to try.  All recipes have been tested and WORK!

****************************PINTEREST**************************

Come and find me on Pinterest... Any of my "52 Ways to cook" Boards are worth following.  If you like this post, please take a second and "Pin" this to your own boards... Better yet, if you are part of a foodie group board please take a second and add this post to your group pins... best way to show your Love!

And BTW, if you are not yet part of a group board, drop me an email at Contact@eRecipeCards.com and request to be added to my group board... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! (be sure to include your pinterest ID when you write)  Once you are added, any pins you add will be seen by 10s of THOUSANDS of followers of the board (and growing daily).

Rules, only 2... 
  1. In order to join you need to start following the group board as well as at least one of my boards.
  2. And you must ONLY pin original sources, posts from food related bloggers only.  If you are a blogger, this is a great way to have thousands of potential readers see your work,  If you are a fan of bloggers, a great way to share your favorites...
    Come and be a part of ... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! on Pinterest

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Mixed Greens with Apple, Grapes Craisins, Walnuts and Apple Vinaigrette - 52 Specialty Salads


A Classic example of a simple salad turned into something special.

The mixed greens is a store bought bagged salad.

Slice an apple.  I do like the Ambrosia variety of Apples.  Tasty and also are slow to discolor after slicing.

Cut a few grapes (if you are really rushed, just add the grapes uncut).

A a couple little handfuls of what's in the pantry (Craisins and nuts are usually in mine).

Make your own vinaigrette to match the salad.  A Jam Jar fresh made vinaigrette are so easy.  Once you make a couple they become second nature.  Measurements are approximate and can be adjusted "to Taste".

Enjoy your lunch!

OH, and if you are ever asked to cater a meal, a specialty salad like this can be put together in minutes, and anytime you say the words, "Fresh made vinaigrette", your clients get real excited!


OK... Here's what I did...

Mixed Greens with Apple, Craisins, Walnuts and Apple Vinaigrette


Ingredients
  • A Big Handful of Mixed Greens
  • A Little Handful of Walnuts
  • A Little Handful of Craisins
  • A Little Handful of Grapes (Sliced and Quartered)
  • Half an Apple, Cored and Sliced
  • FOR THE APPLE VINAIGRETTE - 2 TBS Apple Juice (can substitute 1 TBS Apple Cider Vinegar)
  • 2 TBS Olive Oil
  • 1 TBS Honey
  • 1 TBS Yellow Mustard
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Pinch of Pepper
  • OPTIONAL - Pinch of Sugar to Taste
Cooking Directions
  1. There really should be a measurement for "A Big Handful". My guess... About 2 Cups. So, arrange 2 Cups of Mixed Greens on a plate.
  2. "A Little Handful" is about 1/2 A Cup (my guess). But really at this stage, add to taste. If you like Craisins, add more. If you Like hints of nutty flavors but do not want the flavors to overwhelm the taste... use less. If you must follow a measurement...
  3. FOR THE VINAIGRETTE... Combine all remaining ingredients in a sealed jar. Shake like hell for about 2 minutes until everything is incorporated.
  4. Add 1/2 Cup Craisins
  5. Add 1/2 Cup Walnuts
  6. Add 1/2 Cup of Sliced Grapes
  7. Slice the Apple and arrange everything in an attractive pattern.
  8. Taste. Add additional salt, pepper, sugar as desired.
  9. Just before serving, pour over the salad, serve chilled and ENJOY!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Beer Battered Fried Fish Fillets - 52 Cooking with Beer Recipes


OH BOY FISH!

Takes me back to my youth.  My Grandpa lived on a lake and for awhile he owned and ran a bate shop.  I remember being about 5 years old and he would let me dip the minnows!

Just about every night we would eat fish (occasionally the ones I caught).  I even recall the open fire and cast iron pan that was used... Fancy set up, being balanced between a couple of cinder blocks.

But I digress...

This recipe is for a very basic beer batter.  Equal parts flour and cornmeal, seasonings and add beer until the batter is the right consistency.

The type of beer does very much change the flavor of the crispy coating.  In my opinion, a heavy dark beer like Guinness is overpowering.  A flavored beer (like an Amber Killian's) adds  a wonderful taste.

But for me, I like something with a little Citrus aftertaste like my Hometown brewed Boulevard Wheat.  Light and crisp taste with hints of lemon.

Sounds perfect for a mess 'o Fried Catfish (or the cheaper Asian version, Swai that I used here!

Enjoy!


OK... Here's what I did...

Beer Battered Fried Fish Fillets - 52 Cooking with Beer Recipes


Ingredients
  • 1 Cup Flour
  • 1 Cup Cornmeal
  • 1 TBS Sea Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Cajun Spice Mix (Make your own (Like my Big Easy in a Jar Spice Mix) or use a store bought mix)
  • 1 Bottle (12 OZ) Beer, room temperature
  • 4 - one inch thick Fish Fillets (I used Swai, an Asian Catfish)
  • Enough Vegetable Oil to cover 1 Inch of the bottom of heavy bottomed Frying Pan
  • Malt Vinegar, Lemon Wedges and Tartar Sauce for Garnish
Cooking Directions
  1. Prepare the Frying pan, add enough Vegetable or Canola Oil to cover about 1 inch of the bottom. Heat to 350 degrees.
  2. While the oil is heating, take each of the fish fillets and dry them with a paper towel. Allow to air dry while you ...
  3. Prepare the batter... Whisk together the Cornmeal, Flour, Salt and Cajun Spices. Add the beer and stir to mix.
  4. Dip each fillet into the Beer Batter and carefully drop into the frying pan HOT oil. Move them around a bit so they do not stick. Fry until they are golden brown and delicious looking and crispy. About 3 minutes depending on the oil temp. Flip and continue to fry until both sides are evenly golden brown and delicious.
  5. Remove from the oil and drain on a paper towel.
  6. Serve warm with Lemon Wedges, Tartar Sauce and Malt Vinegar... And Enjoy!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

3 Tips For WORLD's BEST Chocolate Chip Cookies - 52 Cookie Recipes


It's a bold statement since there are hundreds of versions of a Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe out there.

Well, these are the best (in my opinion).

Here's what makes the difference...

1- Watch your cooking time for best Texture... Take a look at the edges.  See the slightly dark edges.  That part of the cookie is crispy and just a bit crunchy.  While the center of the cookie is still a delicious light golden color.  That part of the cookie is still soft and chewy.  Many folks may think to under cook the cookie makes for a chewy delight, and there are some who insist on that crunch.  the goal for the WORLD's BEST Chocolate Chip Cookie is to have a bot of crunch and a bit of soft and chewy in every bite.  All ovens cook just a bit differently, so be sure to keep an eye on the tray while they are cooking.  When the edges start to darken, they are done.

2- A Little Something Something adds a lot of flavor... This recipe actually has THREE Something Somethings in the ingredient list.  The first is Orange Zest.  You can of course just add the zest to the mixing bowl.  I actually prefer to make some Orange Sugar in advance (follow the link for the recipe).  It adds such a BIG burst of flavor to the cookie.  Something that makes people ask what that little extra something there is in your cookies that make them something special.

I also like to add a quarter cup of Almond Meal!  Just enough to add a bit of nutty flavor.

And my final something something is a bit unorthodox... Cayenne Pepper.  Really!  Not much, just a tiny pinch (less than 1/8th tsp).  It has to do with biology and the position of your taste buds... Taste buds that like sweet are in the front of your mouth.  Buds that like Spicy are in the back.  Add a tiny bit (so small it doesn't really add any HEAT spice, just a little something something extra).  That extra bit makes those back buds happy.  Your whole mouth happy!

3- DO NOT OVER MIX the dough... Almost any baking recipe that calls for flour should only be mixed to fully incorporate, but not mixed for a long time... Just a minute or so of folding will work.  If you over mix the dough you end up with a denser cookie.  It works best if you only mix until the ingredients are incorporated.  Don't worry about a few lumps.

And of course serve them a little warm with an ice cold glass of MILK!!!


OK... Here's what I did...


3 Tips For 
WORLD's BEST
Chocolate Chip Cookies



Ingredients
  • 2 Cups Flour
  • 1/4 Cup Almond Meal
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tiny pinch (less than 1/8th TSP) Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 Cup (2 Sticks) Butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 Cup Sugar
  • Zest of 1 Medium Orange
  • 3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 2 Cups Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • 1 Cup Walnut Pieces (optional)
Cooking Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 375. Prepare baking sheet with parchment paper
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix Butter, Sugar, Orange Zest, Vanilla and Brown Sugar with the paddle attachment until Creamy.
  3. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl whisk together the Flour, Almond Meal, Salt and Cayenne Pepper until well combined.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time to the butter mix and mix for one additional minute.
  5. Remove bowl from the stand mixer. Fold wet ingredients and dry ingredients together until well mixed. BUT do not over mix. Once the ingredients have been incorporated, add the Chocolate Chips and optional nuts. Fold until evenly mixed.
  6. Drop by rounded teaspoon onto the cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes until edges just start to brown. The goal is to have a bit of crunch on the outside while the center is soft and chewy.
  8. Remove the tray from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes before transferring the cookies onto a cooling rack.
  9. Makes 4 to 5 dozen, Serve still a bit warm from the oven with an ice cold glass of milk and ENJOY!

*************************************************************************

So,  I am pleased to list this as one of my Growing list of  "52 Ways to Cook COOKIE, BARS and TRUFFLES"!!!

Old school like classic criss cross peanut butter to new takes on interesting recipes like a beautiful Red Velvet with the cream cheese mixed inside the cookie, accented with white chocolate chips!  Even a Pineapple Cream Cheese EASY Bar with only 5 ingredients! 
Stop on by, there's always a new cookie in the cookie jar!

****************************PINTEREST**************************

Come and find me on Pinterest... Any of my "52 Ways to cook" Boards are worth following.  If you like this post, please take a second and "Pin" this to your own boards... Better yet, if you are part of a foodie group board please take a second and add this post to your group pins... best way to show your Love!

And BTW, if you are not yet part of a group board, drop me an email at Contact@eRecipeCards.com and request to be added to my group board... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! (be sure to include your pinterest ID when you write)  Once you are added, any pins you add will be seen by 10s of THOUSANDS of followers of the board (and growing daily).

Rules, only 2... 
  1. In order to join you need to start following the group board as well as at least one of my boards.
  2. And you must ONLY pin original sources, posts from food related bloggers only.  If you are a blogger, this is a great way to have thousands of potential readers see your work,  If you are a fan of bloggers, a great way to share your favorites...
    Come and be a part of ... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! on Pinterest

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Almond Thumbprint Cookies with Himalayan Sea Salt - 52 Cookie Recipes


Everyone knows that adding Sea Salt to chocolate adds an extra ZING of flavor.  This recipe takes that several steps beyond a simple ZING...

The Specialty Gourmet Himalayan Sea Salt...
AN Extra Zip with Citrus Zest added to the sugar...
AND Almond Meal added to the flour for an extra hint of nutty flavor.

A classic look but an all new ADULT Cookie!


OK... Here's what I did...


Almond Thumbprint Cookies 

with Himalayan Sea Salt



Ingredients
  • 2 Cup Flour
  • 1-1/2 Cup Almond Meal
  • 1 Cup (2 Sticks) Butter, Softened to room temperature
  • 1 Cup Sugar (I used a cup of Orange Sugar for an extra burst of flavor)
  • If You do not Use Orange Sugar, Add the zest of 1 Lemon or Orange
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 48 LARGE Chocolate Chips (I used the Dark Chocolate Ones)
  • Sprinkle of Himalayan Sea Salt
Cooking Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, prepare a couple of cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk together the Flour and Almond Meal
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix the Sugar, Zest and Sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the Vanilla and continue to mix.
  4. Remove bowl from the stand mixer and add the flour/meal mix. Fold together until mixed. Do not over mix. Stir until just incorporated.
  5. Scoop the dough into Rounded teaspoon size balls. Arrange on the cookie sheets a couple of inches apart. Depress the center with your thumb (Thumbprint cookies, remember).
  6. Bake for 10 minutes until the dough has cooked through and just a hint of browning begins. Pull from the oven, leave the cookies on the cookie sheets and add a large chocolate chip to the center. Let set for 10 more minutes (out of the oven). The HOT cookies will soften the chocolate. Sprinkle with a dozen or so grains of the specialty Sea Salt. Move to a cooling rack and allow to cool.
  7. Serve warm with a glass of COLD milk and ENJOY!

*************************************************************************

So,  I am pleased to list this as one of my Growing list of  "52 Ways to Cook COOKIE, BARS and TRUFFLES"!!!

Old school like classic criss cross peanut butter to new takes on interesting recipes like a beautiful Red Velvet with the cream cheese mixed inside the cookie, accented with white chocolate chips!  Even a Pineapple Cream Cheese EASY Bar with only 5 ingredients! 
Stop on by, there's always a new cookie in the cookie jar!

****************************PINTEREST**************************

Come and find me on Pinterest... Any of my "52 Ways to cook" Boards are worth following.  If you like this post, please take a second and "Pin" this to your own boards... Better yet, if you are part of a foodie group board please take a second and add this post to your group pins... best way to show your Love!

And BTW, if you are not yet part of a group board, drop me an email at Contact@eRecipeCards.com and request to be added to my group board... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! (be sure to include your pinterest ID when you write)  Once you are added, any pins you add will be seen by 10s of THOUSANDS of followers of the board (and growing daily).

Rules, only 2... 
  1. In order to join you need to start following the group board as well as at least one of my boards.
  2. And you must ONLY pin original sources, posts from food related bloggers only.  If you are a blogger, this is a great way to have thousands of potential readers see your work,  If you are a fan of bloggers, a great way to share your favorites...
    Come and be a part of ... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! on Pinterest

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