Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Homemade Cheese-Itz

I love cheese-itz. They are such a yummy snack!  I found this recipe on Katrina's site!  I was in a bit of a rush, so my cheese-itz were not perfect (the squares were more of rectangles, and the dots on the middle are not centered) BUT they were still delicious! By the way, I wasn't rushing to do anything. I was rushing because I *REALLY* wanted to try them!


You'll need: 

·        8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated

·        4 Tablespoons of unsalted butter, room temperature

·        ½ teaspoon salt
·        1 cup flour
·        2 Tablespoons ice water
·        Coarse salt for sprinkling (if desired)

You will need to: 

1.   Combine cheese, butter, and salt in the bowl. It is recommended to use a paddle, but I don't have one, so I used the regular beaters. The mixture will be very crumbly.

2.   Slowly add flour and then the ice water. You may add a few more drops of water to help it come together but be careful not to add too much. You don’t want a wet dough.

3.   Pat the dough into 2 discs and wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes (or longer).
4.   Preheat oven to 375⁰F.
5.   Using parchment paper or a silicone mat roll each disc to 1/8 inch or less and cut into 1 inch squares (a pastry wheel or pizza wheel is easiest). Use a toothpick to punch a hole into the center of each square. Add coarse salt, if desired.
One of them looks like the state of Indiana :) 

6.   Bake for about 12 minutes or until puffed and browning around the edges. If you pull them out too soon and the crackers don’t have the desired crispiness you want then simply return them to the oven for 2-3 more minutes.
8.   Put crackers to a cooling rack. Or just gobble them up while burning your fingers. Not that I would do that. 


I made mine thicker than suggested, but I recommend making them a bit thinner than mine!

-Domesticated Duchess

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Pudding Cookies - Have it Your Way

At last. The cookie that you can have your way.  It is super easy, and the dough works perfect with whichever mix-ins your little heart desires.  Thanks Sunday Baker, for this recipe!

You'll Need:
2 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup butter (1.5 sticks) softened
¾ cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup white sugar
1 (3.4 oz.) pkgs. instant vanilla pudding
2 eggs, room temp
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups of add-ins (pecans, chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, butterscotch chips, chopped up candy bars, walnuts, even marshmallows!) 

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
 2. Stir together flour and baking soda in separate bowl and set aside;
The good stuff in life
3. In a large bowl, cream butter, brown and white sugar. 
It's okay to taste.. no raw eggs yet!
4. Beat in pudding mix until well blended.
5. Stir in the eggs and vanilla.
6. When smooth, slowly add in the flour mixture. This can take a little while, but make sure it's well incorporated into mix.
7. Finally add in the mixers (I did milk chocolate chips and semi-sweet chocolate chips.. but I'm boring and love chocolate)
8. Make the balls into 1" 
9. Line cookies treys with baking sheets or parchment paper. 
10. Bake 10 minutes

MAKES ~40!!!

-Domesticated Duchess

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sugar Cookie Cake Bars

As tailgate season officially has commenced, I strive to find food that is easy to eat at a tailgate. However, since we have a really large group of tailgaters I try to keep the snacks I make to something traditional that will be liked by all.

However, I was running very behind and didn't have a lot of time. I didn't have time to go to the store, so I found my recipe for sugar cookie cake bars! They are quick and easy.  These bars are not life-changing, but they are pretty good especially when you are in a time crunch and need to feed a LOT of people!

You'll need: 
2 sticks of butter
2 1/4 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
4 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. 

3. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing after each egg. Add vanilla & mix well.

4. In a separate bowl combine flour, salt & soda & stir with a whisk to combine. Add to wet mixture and mix just until combined.
5. Spread on a greased baking sheet... (I used parchment paper)

6. Bake for 15 min, until light golden brown or until a toothpick comes out clean. 
7. Cool completely and frost.

I frosted mine with Pillsbury (did I mention I was in a mega rush)  

You can also use food coloring for the frosting, if you want to make it for a special occasion (like orange for Halloween.. which is in just a few weeks!)

-Domesticated Duchess

Monday, September 12, 2011

Easy as 1-2-3 Peanut Butter Cookies

It is officially football season!  A big group of our friends make a big event out of each home football game (which we conveniently all have season tickets for).  We get to town early to tailgate most of the day, yell loud to support our team, and stay well past the end of the game. 

With tailgates, comes lots and lots of snacks.  Most my recipes (especially sweets), I try to make for events where there will be lots of people.  And what better to test my new recipes then on my unexpecting friends at tailgate parties? 

Here is a perfect recipe.  It is ridiculously easy. It is also delicious! I like to make individual snacks (cookies, bars, brownies) for tailgates because it is easier than having to have a sweet that you'll need utensils or a plate!

You'll Need:
2 cups of Creamy Peanut Butter 
1 cup of White Sugar
1 cup of Brown Sugar
2 Eggs
30 Hershey Kisses (if desired)
*Note: If desired, you can use all white sugar*

1. Put peanut butter, sugars, and eggs into a large mixing bowl.
2. Mix until very smooth (will be a bit "grainy")
3. Form into 1 inch balls
4. Bake for 10 minutes on 350 degrees
5. While the cookies are baking, unwrap your hershey kisses and once the cookies are right out of the oven, place the Hershey Kisses in the middle while still hot.
6. Cool for 5 minutes then transfer to rack

If you do not want to use the chocolate kisses, that is fine (although why anyone would choose to omit chocolate I still don't know), while the cookies are hot press your fork into an "X" so the cookies have a design

-Domesticated Duchess

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Restaurant Style Guacamole

"This is the best guacamole I've ever had"... for my husband and I who live in Texas (and therefore have access to some of the best Mexican food) this was a HUGE compliment.

This is another one of my original recipes, mostly by watching at Mexican restaurants with the table-side prepared guacamole.

You'll need: 

3 whole avocados
1 tomato
1 green onion
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
1 teaspoon of garlic powdered (or if you like it REALLY garlicy you can use 1 clove of garlic.. pressed of course)
Salt (I used garlic salt)

1. Wash and chop up a tomato and green onion into tiny pieces (set aside for later use)

2. Cut the avocados in half and pull out the pits.  Scoop out the avocado and put into a large mixing bowl. Mash up with a fork.

3. In the bowl with the avocado, put in the lemon juice and garlic powder (mix in well)
4. Put in the tomato and green onion, until evenly distributed in the mix

5. Use several dashes of salt as preferred (I used about 4-5 dash of salt)
6. Serve & Enjoy!!

-Domesticated Duchess

Monday, September 5, 2011

Oreo Cheesecake

Cheesecake.  An all around favorite.  Oreo. America's Favorite Cookies.

The two together make for one sweet treat!  Although, I will be honest.. I prefer regular cheesecake, this is pretty good!!

You'll need
1 package of Oreo cookies (I used double stuff)
4 tablespoons of butter
3, 8 oz packages of cream cheese (room temp)
3/4 cup of granulated sugar + 2 tablespoons
3/4 cup of sour cream (room temp)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt
3 eggs (room temp)

1. Preheat oven to 325.  Make sure 325 (once I did it more than 325, and it was not as delicious!).  Line a 9x13 inch pan with foil and spray with cooking spray
2. Make the crust first: use 2 sleeves of oreos (about 28 cookies) until ground up very finely.  Put into a bowl.
3. Melt your butter in the microwave. Mix the butter so the cookies are wet
4. Place the cookie-crumb mixture in a lined pan and press down using your fingers 

5. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes (leave the oven on because you'll need to use it again in a bit)
6. With the remaining oreos, snap in half and put in food processor. Turn it off and on a few times (about 7 or 8 times, but very quickly). You want them to be roughly chopped.
7. In another large bowl, using your mixer beat the cream cheese and sugar until well blended. Beat in sour cream.
8. Add in vanilla and salt and continue beating.
9. Add in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each minute.
10. Stir in chopped oreos into the mix
11. Pour the cream cheese mixture over the cookie crust and bake for 40 minutes.
12. Chill at least 4-5 hours (best if overnight)

*Just a note, if you are a serious oreo lover, I would actually buy 2 packs of oreos, and then use an extra 7 or so for the crust, and an extra 7 or so for the cake. I'm sure you would be able to find a use for the rest of the oreos:)

-Domesticated Duchess

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Cinnamon Biscuits

Breakfast gets neglected.  In our household seems like we're running to get to work on time, or rushing out the door to get to church that breakfast is always an after thought.  Cereal and granola bars is what we eat for breakfast every single day.

Over the holiday weekend, we woke up on Saturday with no plans, which never happens!  We were excited to do nothing, and wanted to start it off right with some delicious cinnamon biscuits.  I chose cinnamon biscuits because we always do waffles whenever we get a chance to sit and enjoy breakfast, and cinnamon biscuits are MUCH easier than cinnamon buns. 

These are delicious, rich and super filling.  

You'll Need:

2 cups all purpose flour
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups heavy cream divided
1/2 cup cinnamon chips (Hershey's was the only brand at my grocery store that had these wonderful morsels) 
3/4 cup confectioner's sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Step-by-step directions:
1.  Preheat oven to 425 degrees
2.  Lightly grease an 8x8 baking pan
3.  In a large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Pour in 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups of the cream - just enough to make it thick (but will still be a bit crumbly)
4.  On a floured surface, use a rolling pin to make a large square with the dough and slice into 8 even pieces
5. Lay four of the squares in the baking pan, sprinkle about a tablespoon and a half (more or less depending on your taste buds) on each biscuit. 
Next time, I will definitely add more chips.. I only did about closer to a teaspoon than a  tablespoon!
6. Take the left over biscuits and cover like a sandwich, only pinching the edges lightly to seal.
Tightly pinched at the edges
7. Pour the leftover cinnamon chips and poor on top of each biscuit
8. Dash extra cinnamon if you please on top
With an extra dash of cinnamon
9. Bake for about 15 minutes (mine took 16)
10. When the biscuits come out of the oven spread the cinnamon chips smoothly as they are hot (some chips will stay in the chip form.
11.  With the remaining cream, the confectioner's sugar, and vanilla whisk together quickly.
Yummy glaze!! If you have some cream cheese throw it in with a bit of butter for an icing consistency rather than a glaze!
12. Pour the glaze over the biscuits
13. Eat and enjoy!
Oh my word... delicious!!

-Domesticated Duchess

Friday, September 2, 2011

Product Review: Philadelphia Cooking Creme

My second product review... featuring more chicken!  I did mention that we eat a LOT of chicken in my house!

I have seen commercials for the Philadelphia Cooking Creme (in four different flavors).  I decided to try it out.  When I got to the isle (next to the sour cream and cream cheese) I looked at the back of each.  This one seemed the safest.

I chopped up chicken in small pieces and cooked on a skillet (I seasoned the chicken using different spices).  All the while I had some whole wheat pasta boiling.  After the chicken was done, I added 2 cups of frozen veggies.  I used corn and peas because that is what I had.  I think carrots and onions and peppers would also taste great! 

After a couple minutes when the veggies were no longer frozen I poured in the cream and heated for a couple minutes.

This is child friendly, and relatively healthy. With one pound of chicken, 2 cups of veggies, and pasta this makes about 5 servings. You could also add more pasta to get more servings.

The hubs really liked it.  He preferred it to the orange chicken, and thought the creme tasted like ranch.

I also liked it, however,  I thought the flavor of the creme was really strong. I didn't put too much pasta, so that could be the reason.  Next time I will add more chicken (the container called for 1 pound) and more veggies.  

The price was OK (right under $3) but I think it is a good way to give some variety to our favorite form of protein.  

Here is what ours looked like:
Yum! It was also good left over!! 

Overall, this is a good buy just make sure to add enough other items so it is not so strong.  Also, this tastes pretty good reheated! Much better than the orange chicken did!

-Domesticated Duchess