Monthly Archives: December 2010

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Eggplant Parmesan

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Eggplant can be so delicious if prepared correctly. For eggplant Parmesan, the eggplant needs to be drained of the water and bitterness before pan frying. You can find a lot of different methods on how to drain eggplant but I just use some paper towels and something heavy to press on top of the slices. I also like to strain the tomato sauce because it prevents the dish from becoming too watery. The eggplant parmesan turned out well–after the second round of cooking. I took it out the first night and it was just a little undercooked. The next day I cooked it about twice as long and it tasted great.

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Chicken Quesadilla with Caramelized Onions

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I had two leftover chicken thighs from the roasted Cajun chicken so I thought I would use them for chicken quesadillas. I once ordered a quesadilla at this great restaurant that used Manchego cheese and caramelized onions. It was really good so I thought I would try to recreate it. Although I only had cheddar cheese the quesadilla turned out pretty well. I would like to try this recipe out with some of the more tasty Mexican cheeses instead of just plain cheddar.

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Mint Chocolate Meringue Cookies

These cookies require this weird baking process where they cook overnight in an oven that has been turned off. I’m not sure why this is but it works since the cookies turned out really well.  The insides are a little gooey with a nice, light texture. They look so pretty on a plate too!

Mint Chocolate Meringue Cookies
(Makes 2 dozen)
Printable Version

Ingredients:

  • 2 egg whites
  • 2/3 c. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp mint extract
  • pinch salt
  • 2 drops green food coloring
  • 11 oz. semisweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. In a bowl, whip the eggs until they are stiff.
  2. Slowly add the sugar, salt, mint, and coloring while whipping.
  3. Fold in the chips. Place dough with a tablespoon onto ungreased cookie sheets.
  4. Preheat the oven to 400F and leave on for 15 minutes, then turn off. Put the cookies in the oven and let sit over night.

Roasted Cajun Chicken

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There are a lot of Cajun chicken recipes on the internet but I thought I would try making up my own wet rub.  I thought the chicken turned out tasty–it was very juicy and tender. The rub was spicy and savory and I was quite happy with the results. I made some potato fries with the chicken and they were both pretty good together. I have a lot of leftover chicken so I think I will try making some chicken quesadillas out of it too.

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Potato Fries with Parmesan and Basil

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These baked, crunchy potatoes are really good and simple to make. The only thing that might give you trouble is if you don’t have a potato fry cutter. I have one, and it cuts the potato perfectly. If you don’t you could always just slice these as chips or cut them by hand.

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Raspberry Chocolate Chip Cookies

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These cookies are based on the traditional Toll House chocolate chip recipe but with raspberries added to the batter. The original recipe calls for 3/4 cup white sugar but I like to use only 1/2 cup. These cookies always come out so delicious and soft. Even though it’s a really simple recipe it’s probably one of my favorites.

Gingersnap Cookies

I love gingersnaps but they are often a very crunchy, hard cookie. I like a soft gingersnap so I decided to try them myself. They turned out much softer than I had anticipated which was great. I like a lot of ginger flavor so I was pretty liberal with the powder. For a little variety you can throw in a teaspoon orange zest or a drop of orange extract to change things up. This is a very soft and savory cookie recipe for the holidays!

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Chocolate Peppermint Bark

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I had never tried making bark before but this recipe was very easy to follow. The second layer is made of melted white chocolate that I dyed green with a little food coloring. If you want to make it even more minty add a drop of mint extract to one of the chocolate layers. This bark looks very pretty for the holidays!

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Iced Eggnog Cookies

I have been wanting to do some holiday themed cookies for a while and I figured this week I could to do a bit of a cookie marathon. These cookies are great–they taste exactly like eggnog. They are also a great way of getting rid of the leftover eggnog. For the spiced flour, I threw in heaping teaspoons of nutmeg and cinnamon so the cookies had a lot of flavor. You can easily cut out the 1/4 cup sugar since the icing is so sweet. I quickly learned not to ice the cookies right after they come out of the oven–I ended up icing the cookie sheet instead. If you’re someone like me who does not own an electric mixer, this recipe can easily be done by hand.

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BBQ Chicken Pizza with Caramelized Onions

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It took some convincing for my Italian, east-coast born, boyfriend to go along with a pizza recipe that requires barbeque sauce, not tomato sauce. After he tasted it though I didn’t have to do anymore convincing. The flavors of this recipe were very good. The tangy barbeque sauce was a nice compliment to the sweet onions. I used Fontina cheese, but you can make it with blue, gouda, feta or mozzarella cheese as well.

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