Saturday, October 17, 2009

apple sauce

Fall is upon us so its apple season :)

This is what I do for applesauce, thought I'd share since someone had asked me for the recipe recently anyways.


3lbs of apples (granny smith or another cooking apple work best), peeled, cored, and sliced
1/2 cup water or cider
1/4 cup sugar (or to taste)
1/4 to 1/2 tsp of cinnamon (or to taste)
Nutmeg, allspice and cloves may be added to taste

Put everything in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Cover and cook until the apples are very soft, about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer the apples to a bowl and mash with a fork or potato masher. Allow sauce to cool and place in a container with a tight fitting lid. Store in the fridge, can be kept up to a week.

pork loin recipes

Bought a decent sized pork loin at the store last night for dinner, today I just had to decide what to do with it. I have two really good recipes, one involves the grill (we do it on our rotisserie) the other the oven. Chris voted for the rotisserie one, but I'll give you both :)

rubbed and grilled pork loin from the pork council. We do it the same way except rotisserie it for a couple hours on medium. We have a meat thermometer on our grill so I'll stop the rotisserie and stab it in after its been about an hour and a half then every so often to check if its done. We had ours get a little charred last time from flare up but it was mostly the fatty part which we cut off anyways. This time Chris wants me to use the smoker box in our grill so we'll see how it is smoked.

recipe #2 is the apple-topped pork loin from allrecipes. It's great, my grandparents liked it so much when they got leftovers (I seal a meal / freeze stuff for them) that they called me right after they ate it to tell me it was the best pork they'd ever had.

bar cookies

Today I'm in a baking mood and since we're going on a walk in a park with a big group tomorrow I can bake a few things and not have to eat them all myself :)

First up are these strawberry cheesecake bars from Betty Crocker, I had some strawberries, cream cheese, and a sugar cookie mix to use up and so this recipe worked out perfectly. Didn't change anything about that, except instead of using "fruit spread" I made my own strawberry topping of sorts. I got the original recipe from a diabetic cooking site but I changed a lot so I'll just post what I did ;)

strawberry topping:

1 tsp corn starch
1/4 cup Orange Juice
1 cup Mashed OR Pureed Fresh Strawberries
couple of tsp of sugar
1 tbsp Orange Peel Slivers
1/4 tsp Coriander

I poured the orange juice into a sauce pan then sprinkled the corn starch over top and stirred to combine. Then added the remaining ingredients and stirred on the stove over medium heat. Let it come to a boil and simmered it for awhile until it thickened up. Then I let it cool pretty much completely. It made just about 3/4 cup of topping from my one standard package of berries (less a few my 2 year old berry thief stole). Smells a little orange-y from the juice/peel but that should still be good with the cheesecake. May help counteract the sweetness of the sugar cookie crust.

I texted my sister if she had any requests for tomorrow and she wanted me to make my oatmeal jam squares so here's the recipe for that too. Really easy and pretty good :) and since it involves oats you can pretend its good for you.

Oatmeal Jam Squares

2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 3/4 cups flour
1 cup melted butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 jam (I like seedless raspberry for these)

Preheat oven to 375, treat a 9x13 with cooking spray.

Mix everything except the jam together in a bowl (I just use a spatula, don't need a mixer). Separate 2 cups of the mixture and press the rest into the pan.

Spread the jam over top so its as even as possible. If you have thick jam you may need to warm it a little in the microwave to make it spread better.

Sprinkle the rest of the oat mixture over top of the jam. Bake 25-30 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Cool completely, cut into bars.

Monday, October 12, 2009

new chili recipe

Ever since I had my daughter in 2007 I can't seem to stomach my old chili recipe that would make your eyes water and slap you around a bit as you ate it. ;) So I went on the hunt for a new one, and this chili recipe on has good reviews, and the name is pretty awesome :) Boilermaker Tailgate Chili

BUT true to form I decided to start making it during naptime and didn't have everything... so I'll copy/paste the ingredients, to show what I changed, and then review it after dinner. I hope to make the original at some point. I also halved the recipe because we didn't need 12 servings of chili for 3 people.

INGREDIENTS (bold are changes)
1 1/2 lbs stew beef, browned/drained and diced up
1 30oz can chili beans, drained
1 (14 ounce) can petite diced tomatoes with juice
2 (10 ounce) cans rotel (tomatoes & chili peppers)
1 slightly larger than a golfball yellow onion, chopped
1/2 tsp celery seed

1/2 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped (was frozen)
1 tablespoon bacon bits
beef base powder (had about 1 1/2 tbsp left so thats what went in)
1/4 cup beer
2 tablespoons chili powder
1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
1 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoons hot pepper sauce (e.g. Tabasco™)
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon white sugar

we'll be using tostitos and whatever shredded cheese I have that will go with chili, it will be either cheddar or mexican blend. It smells really good :) Will review later.

after dinner:
It did have a lot of bite, Chris loved it with the stew beef instead of ground beef, Dad and I thought it was a bit too spicy. I will make it again and tweak to make it more my own. But if you don't like super spicy you may want to tone down the tabasco sauce and/or chili powder or cayenne pepper.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Amazing snickerdoodles

They were great! I didn't change a thing. I have to keep myself from eating them all.