Saturday, February 12, 2011

Puffy Oven Pancakes

Puffy Oven Pancakes 
(aka Dutch Babies... you can't make that kinda thing up!)

This is absolutly one of my favorite breakfasts to make.

It's Oliver approved too, always a bonus!

Plus, there are a bunch of different variations you can make on it. Here we go:

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Bake Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 2


2 eggs
½ c milk
½ c flour
dash of cinnimon
dash of nutmeg
3 tbsp butter, cold
1 tbsp brown sugar (optional)
pinch of cinnamon (optional)


1. Preheat your oven to 425°F. Place 2 tbsp cold butter into a glass pie dish, and place in the oven to heat while you make the batter (about 5 minutes, until the butter is melted and some brown bits appear). In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar and cinnamon, set aside.

2. Beat the eggs, milk, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg together until smooth. Pour the mixture into the heated pie dish. Some of the butter will end up on top. This is glorious, don't worry! (Note: I doubled the recipe, that's why there are two pie plates)

3. Bake for 8 minutes, then remove from the oven and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar mixture. Place 1 tbsp butter in the center of the pancake, and return to the oven for another 8 to 10 minutes.

NOTE: When cooked, the center will be a little custard-y, that's exactly what you're looking for!
VARIATIONS: There are a bunch of variations you can do here, basically anything you can think of. Here are a few of my favorites though:

1. Toss apple or pear slices in the sugar mixture and place on the pancake (either at the start to bake it, they just won't puff up, or after 8 minutes).

2. Top with Jam at the 8 minute mark

3. Bake plain, the spread a little bit of dulche de leche and some banana slices on top. Mmmmmm

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


I have been just so, so sick this week. I came down with something Friday night, and it's just gotten worse, so nothing's been updated.


I do have a couple waiting in the wings though, and I'll get them up as soon as I can say supercalafragalisticexpialadoshus without starting a coughing fit.

I'm hoping tomorrow?

Get ready for a 5 minute, 4 ingredient, pineapple cream pie, corn flake cookies, and how I make Ragu a little more fun with just a few quick additions.

For now: back to bed!

Then to the doctors.

Then to the other doctors.

Then to garbage night.

Crap, I totally forgot that it was garbage night. Help me.

If you're bored, make the chocolate sheet cake that I got from The Pioneer Woman, it'll change your life!

Or the butter tarts, they're faster and ohhhhhh so good!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Show Stopper Roast Chicken

I call this my show stopper because is tastes like I put hours of planning and effort into figuring out the perfect combination of accouterments to highlight the bird, when really, I got lucky about 5 years ago on my first shot and haven't looked back. Sure, I've tried variations, but I always come back to this.

Unless it's summer time.

Then it's all about the beer can.

Or the rotisserie!

Did I mention that this is a breeze to pull together too?


It's a breeze to pull together!

Show Stopper Roast Chicken

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Bake Time: 2 hours +/-
Serves: 4, but they'll fight over it


1 lemon, sliced into ¼" rounds
8-10 sprigs fresh rosemary (just buy a pack at the store and use it up)
1 medium sweet onion, sliced in half, then each half into 4 chunks
6 tbsp butter, softened
garlic powder
olive oil

Spice Rub:
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
½ tsp garlic powder
1 tsp paprika
½ tsp old bay seasoning


1. Preheat your oven to 350°F and mix together your spice rub.

2. Rinse your chicken, then pat dry with paper towels. Sprinkle the cavity of the bird liberally with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Stuff the cavity with 1 tbsp of butter, 3 sprigs of rosemary, and some lemon slices and onion chunks (roughly 2 of each).

3. Loosen the skin from the breast meat and the legs. Rub ½ tbsp of butter under the skin of each leg, and 1 tbsp of butter under the skin of each breast. Rub the remaining two tbsp of butter all over the outside of the skin. Finally, rub the spice rub over the buttered skin. Yumm.

4. Place the remaining onion chunks, lemon slices, and rosemary sprigs around the perimeter of your roasting pan. Place the chicken, breast side up, onto a roasting rack in the pan. Sprinkle a bit of kosher or fresh ground sea salt over the top of the chicken.

5. Bake at 350°F until the thickest part of the breast registers 180°F on a thermometer. Half way through baking (1 hour in), drizzle some olive oil over the top of the chicken (1-2 tbsp). Be sure to let the chicken rest for 15 minutes before carving or else the meat will lose its juices and you'll be eating dry bird.

My Cheddar (not Bay) Biscuits and My (not Bisquick) Biscuit Mix


So, I'm pregnant, and being so I get cravings. Frequently this time around, and a couple of weeks ago all I wanted were the Red Lobster Cheddar Bay biscuits. I'd been down this road before, and I've tried many of the online versions only to be disappointed, so at least I knew what not to do.

I pulled out the standard ingredients, including biscuit mix, only I didn't have any biscuit mix. Dun dun dun.

Panic like whoa.

See, I live in a small town. We have 2 restaurants that are really more like diners (and one of them only sells chicken wings, but there's a third going in now, woot!). To actually get to a red lobster is a 30 minute drive each way, and I was already in my pajamas (something I tend to get into 0.34 seconds after getting home from work). So, my only option was to make the biscuits from scratch. Or go to the grocery store (please recall pajama statement above).

So, I started hunting online for a biscuit recipe, but instead of finding a biscuit recipe, I found a biscuit mix recipe, and it ended up being awesome! I would link it, but I can't remember where it was, and I forgot to favorite the page. I'll try to figure this out later though, because they deserve all the credit!

Enjoy! I have 3 times since I figured this out (please remember I'm pregnant), and now because I'm typing it out, I'm pretty sure they just got added to the menu tonight. I'm sure they'll work with Asian marinated pork tenderloins!

Cheddar (not Bay) Biscuits

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Bake Time: 17 minutes
Makes: 12 large biscuits


2½ c biscuit mix
4 tbsp butter, straight from the fridge cold
¾ c whole milk, cold
½ tsp garlic powder
1 heaping cup grated medium cheddar cheese

4 tbsp butter, melted
½ tsp dried parsley flakes
1 tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp salt


1. Preheat your oven to 400°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Combine the biscuit mix, butter and cheese with a pastry blender (or cut in with a couple of knifes or forks, I highly recommend getting a pastry blender though!). You want the butter to be in pea sized pieces mixed with the flour.

3. Gently stir in the milk and garlic powder. Don't over mix this or the biscuits won't be fluffy

4. Use a ½ cup measuring cup to scoop up the mix and place onto the prepared baking sheet (you're hands will get a little messy here.

5. Bake for 15 - 17 minutes, until the tops of the biscuits begin to turn a light brown

6. While the biscuits are baking, mix all the topping ingredients together. As soon as the biscuits come out of the oven, use a pastry brush to brush the topping onto the top of each biscuit. Don't be shy here!

NOTE: You can also make smaller, ¼ cup sized biscuits. Just decrease the time in the oven by a few minutes and keep your eye on them. I like the big ones because then I say that I only ate 2 (or 3, or 4) of them, instead of 4 (or 6, or 8).

Pantry Biscuit Mix

This is fantastic because you just store it in a large airtight container in a cool, dry place, or the freezer, for up to 8 months! I found this mix to make biscuits far superior to the store-bought brand...but that's just my humble opinion.

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Makes: 11 cups of mix


9 c all purpose flour
¼ c baking powder
1 tbsp salt
2 c shortening


1. Add all ingredients to a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles course crumbs. Store until needed.

Nan's Buttertarts


This is my great-grandmothers recipe for buttertarts, and it's so simple that I almost feel like they can't possibly be as good as they are. And they are good. I'm currently trying to find a fair to enter them in (because yeah, on my bucket list, right next to making it into the Guiness Book of World Records for anything, is to win a blue ribbon at a country fair. I think these are my ticket).

I made these a week and a half ago, and I know that I've got at least one more pack of frozen tart shells in my freezer, so it's been a battle of the wills to not make at least another dozen. Can this (with it's butter and milk) count as a serving of dairy? Half a serving?

Oh yeah, these are definitely Oliver approved too!

Without further ado...

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Bake Time: 28 minutes
Makes: 24 tarts (standard size)


2/3 c butter, softened
2 c brown sugar
2 eggs
4 tbsp milk
2 tsp vanilla
walnut pieces (optional)


1. Preheat your oven to 450°F and prepare your tart shells.

2. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy

3. Add the eggs, milk and vanilla and mix until well combined.

4. Drop a few nuts (if using) into the bottom of your prepared tart shells (or your tenderflake ones from the freezer, like I do). Fill each shell with 1 tbsp of filling

5. Bake at 450°F for 8 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350°F (do not remove the tarts) and continue baking for another 15 to 20 minutes, until golden brown.

NOTE: At 15 minutes, your filling will be runny, at 20 minutes it will be firm. I'm a firm filling person (as were the folks here at the office, who have been harassing me all week to bring in more), so I strongly suggest going that route.