Sunday, February 28, 2010

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Marscapone Cheese

Well, here is another version of the stuffed portobellos. Sometimes you just crave them, and Dave was craving them. I prefer them with ground turkey, but since we try to eat healthy all week long, I will usually cave and let him pick the meat and Italian Sausage was on the menu. I am going to try something new and add pictures to the blog (as you can see from a few of the other posts) and have taken pics at each stage of the cooking.

2 pkgs of ground Italian Sausage, hot or mild (your preference)
1/2 jar of sun-dried tomatoes, julienned in olive oil
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 leek, chopped
1/4 cup dry sherry
1 tbsp crushed red pepper
1 tbsp fresh thyme
6 oz container marscarpone cheese
1/2 cup shredded gruyere cheese

Pre heat over to 350 degrees. Pre-chop the leeks, mince the garlic and chop the sun-dried tomatoes and thyme.
In a large saute pan, take 2 tbsp olive oil and brown the italian sausage till it is cooked thoroughly. Remove from heat and put into a bowl. In the same pan, add the leeks and saute for about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and the sun-dried tomatoes. Saute for 5 - 7 minutes on medium heat.
Deglaze the pan with the sherry. Add the thyme. Saute for about 5 more minutes. Add the sausage back into the mixture and continue to cook for about 5 more minutes giving the mixture a minute for the tastes to meld together. While the mixture is sauteing, prepare the portobellos. Remove the stems and place the caps on a baking pan. When you are ready to fill the caps, add the marscapone cheese to the mixture stir it, letting it melt into the sausage mixture.
Fill the mushroom caps with the mixture then top each mushroom cap with the gruyere cheese. Bake for 30 minutes. Serve and enjoy.

Lemon Roasted Potatoes

A friend of ours made these for us and they were fantastic. He found the recipe on a website ( and cut back on some of the butter for me (since he knows I am so health conscious). As you will see by the photo I am attaching, they were pretty much gone, before I had a chance to react and take a picture of the final product. :) I was only able to take a picture of a few of these little guys (only the few that were left once we all inhaled them) but it is just a testament to the chef!

1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup butter, unsalted, melted (1 stick) he actually only used half a stick of butter for the recipe
2 tbsps lemon juice
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp dried dill weed
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
5 large potatoes, peeled and cubed

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, stir together the canola oil, melted butter, lemon juice, garlic, dill, salt and pepper. Add potatoes and toss to coat. Spread the potatoes out on a baking sheet and drizzle any remaining liquid from the bowl over them. Bake in the preheated oven until potatoes are brown and crispy, about 45 minutes.
The potatoes came out crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. MMM MMM

Monday, February 22, 2010

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Cupcakes

My darling hubby wanted me to make him these cupcakes that he saw in my Woman's Day magazine that I picked up at the grocery store. Well....they turned out fantastic. This time I followed the recipe exactly (since it is baking), however, the only thing I did differently is when it comes down to the pastry bag. I am not much of a that I don't have all the right equipment so we compromised. We used a hand apple corer and used that to make the holes inside the cupcakes instead of using a pastry bag like the recipe called for. I hope you all enjoy.

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
1 cup reduced fat sour cream
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened (1 1/2 sticks)
1 1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
3 large eggs

Peanut Butter Filling
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
3 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
3 to 4 tbsp milk

Chocolate Frosting
2 cups (12 oz pkg) semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup reduced-fat sour cream

For the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt until well mixed. In a small bowl, whisk the milk and sour cream until blended. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until creamed. Beat in the peanut butter until blended. Add eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. With mixer on low speed, alternately add flour mixture and milk mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture, until just blended. Spoon about 1/4 cup batter into each muffin cup. Bake 20 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cook 10 minutes; remove cupcakes from pan to wire rack to cook completely.

For the filling, beat the peanut butter and butter in medium bowl with electric mixer until smooth. On low speed, gradually beat in confectioners' sugar and 3 to 4 tbsp milk until blended. Beat mixture on high speed 1 minute or until fluffy. **Now here is where mine is different*** I will give you their directions, then tell you what I did. Spoon filling into a pastry bag fitted with a 1/4 in plain round tip. Insert tip into the top of each cupcake. Squeeze as much filling into the center of each as possible (top of the cupcake will bulge slightly). **Since I didn't have a pastry bag, we took an apple corer and cored out the middle of the cupcake to about half way down. Once we did that, we put the filling into one corner of a Ziploc bag and snipped just a bit of that corner off. We twisted the bag and pushed the filling out of the snipped corner and filled each cup cake with the peanut butter filling.

For the frosting, melt the chocolate chips in a large glass bowl in a microwave as package directs. add sour cream; beat with an electric mixer until fluffy and good spreading consistency. Spread about 2 tbsp frosting on each cupcake.

These were absolutely FANTASTIC!!!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Chicken with a Sun-Dried Tomato and Rosemary Cream Sauce

Made this tonight and Dave was licking the bowl!! So I am guessing it turned out pretty good! :)

2 tbsp olive oil
2 boneless chicken breast halves, skinned and cut into bite size pieces
4 to 5 cloves of garlic, minced,
1 jar of sun-dried tomatoes, julienned in olive oil
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 cup dry sherry
1/2 cup chicken stock, unsalted (kitchen basics)
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt to taste

In the olive oil, saute, the chicken breasts until they are cooked. Remove from heat. Add the jar of tomatoes including th eolive oil and saute for 5 minutes. Add the minced garlic and the rosemary. Deglaze the pan with the chicken stock. Add the sherry and saute for another 5 - 7 minutes. Add the chicken back in and let saute for another 5 minutes so the flavors have time to blend together. About 5 - 7 minutes before serving stir in the whipping cream and the paremsan cheese. Serve over pasta!!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Spicy Orange Stir Fry Sauce

Dave has been trying to season his new wok I bought him for Christmas and I found this recipe on Recipezar. I modified it a bit, but it turned out fantastic. I hope you all enjoy it!!!

½ cup fresh orange juice (I squeezed juice from cuties (little clementine oranges))

4 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce

4 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoon rice wine vinegar

2 tablespoon chili paste with garlic

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 tbsp crushed red peppers

Combine all ingredients together. Mix into a stir fry…any ingredients of your choice. We used, shrimp, yellow squash, zucchini, carrots, celery, mushrooms and scallions. This sauce was absolutely fantastic.