Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup pumpkin (canned)
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil (can sub with canola oil)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin spice (add an extra 1/2 teaspoon if you like spice)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp milk
  • 2 cups chocolate chips

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking mat. Set aside.

  2. Combine pumpkin, sugar, vegetable oil, vanilla and egg in a large bowl. Mix until smooth.

  3. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, ground cinnamon, and salt. Dissolve the baking soda with the milk and stir into the wet ingredients. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture and mix well. Stir until combined.

  4. Add chocolate chips and stir until combined.

  5. Drop cookies on by the spoonful about 2 inches apart. Add a few extra chocolate chips to the tops if desired. Bake for 10-11 minutes, or until a toothpick comes clean. Allow to cool on pan for 2 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack.

    RECIPE FROM IHEARTNAPTIME.NET

Ghost Kabobs

INGREDIENTS

  • Marshmallows
  • Strawberries
  • Melon (cut into cubes)
  • Kabob Skewers
  • Food colouring marker

INSTRUCTIONS

1. For the marshmallows, use a black food colouring marker to draw a ghostly face onto each marshmallow. (This is a great task for older kids to help with!)  Let the marshmallows dry for a few minutes before using.

2. Wash and cut the fruit into bite-sized pieces.  Add a strawberry, piece of melon and then a ghost marshmallow to the skewer.  Repeat the pattern until you are at the top.

 

 

Eyeball Deviled Eggs

Ingredients

  • 12 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 1 pinch celery salt
  • 1 tablespoon prepared yellow mustard
  • 2 drops green food colouring, or as needed
  • 1 (6 ounces) can be sliced black olives, drained

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place all of the eggs into a large pot so they can rest on the bottom in a single layer. Fill with just enough cold water to cover the eggs. Bring to a boil, then cover, remove from the heat and let stand for about 15 minutes. Rinse under cold water or add some ice to the water and let the eggs cool completely. Peel and slice in half lengthwise.
  2. Remove the yolks from the eggs and place them in a bowl. Mix in the relish, mayonnaise, celery salt, mustard, and food colouring. Spoon this filling into the egg whites and place them on a serving tray. Round the top of the filling using the spoon. Place an olive slice on each yolk to create the centre of the eye. Dab a tiny bit of mayonnaise in the centre of the olive as a finishing touch.

 

Recipe from allrecipes.com

Pumpkin Roll

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar (to sprinkle on towel)
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup pure pumpkin puree

For the Filling

  • 1 (8 ounces) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan with parchment paper and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Sprinkle a clean tea towel with powdered sugar. Set pan and towel aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.
  3. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat eggs, vanilla, and sugar until thick.
  4. Add in pumpkin and mix to combine.
  5. Stir in flour mixture.
  6. Spread batter evenly into prepared pan.
  7. Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until the top of cake springs back when touched.
  8. Immediately loosen and turn cake onto prepared towel. Carefully peel off the paper. Roll up cake and towel together, starting with narrow end. Cool on wire rack.
  9. In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter, and vanilla extract until smooth.
  10. Carefully unroll cake; remove towel.
  11. Spread cream cheese mixture over cake. Reroll cake.
  12. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour.

Special note:

  • Store prepared Pumpkin Roll in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You can also wrap tightly in a layer of plastic wrap and then foil and store in the freezer for up to one month. Remove frozen Pumpkin Roll to room temperature one hour before serving.

Recipe from mybakingaddiction.com

Home Made Macaroni and Cheese

INGREDIENTS

  • 1(16 ounces) box rigatoni pasta
  • 8ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 8ounces Monterey jack cheese, shredded
  • 4ounces parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2cups heavy cream
  • salt and pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Prepare rigatoni noodles according to package directions, but add a good bit of salt to the water. Once cooked, drain but do not rinse the pasta.
  3. Transfer pasta to a large mixing bowl. Add half the cheddar, Monterey jack and parmesan cheeses, as well as the heavy cream. Stir well to combine, season with pepper to taste.
  4. Transfer the mixture to a 9″x13″ casserole dish. Sprinkle the remaining cheeses on top and bake for 30 minutes until golden brown and bubbly.

Perfecting the Pancake

Pancakes are not the easiest thing to make.

Here are a few tips on how to make them

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mix flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar: In a medium-size mixing bowl, whisk together all your dry ingredients
  2. Mix milk, eggs, and melted butter: In a separate bowl, whisk together all of the wet ingredients until the egg is broken up.
  3. Combine the wet and dry: Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Gently stir them together until you stop seeing flour. Be careful not to over mix, that will make the batter tough. Leave a few lumps for tender pancakes.
  4. Preheat the pan: Place your pan over a medium-high flame and let the surface get hot. It’ hot enough when you sprinkle a few droplets of water over the surface and they evaporate.
  5. Oil the pan: Moisten a paper towel with vegetable oil and lightly wipe the bottom of the pan. This will keep the pancakes from sticking.
  6. Prepare the sacrifice: It is one of the great unsolved mysteries of the universe that the first pancake is always a disaster. Accept it and move on to pancake number 2.
  7. For each pancake, gently pour 1/2 cup of batter into the pan, using a ladle or a measuring cup. Use the back of a spoon to spread the batter into a circle.
  8. Wait: Watch the pancakes carefully. Bubbles will form in the batter. When they begin to pop, the pancakes are ready to be flipped. Turn over gently with the spatula and cook for about one minute on the flip side.

 

Recipe from food republic .com

French Dip and Homeade Au Jus

INGREDIENTS

  • 6 hoagie rolls
  • 1-2 lbs cooked roast beef 
  • 1 1/2 cups beef stock plus more as needed
  • 1 tsp low sodium soy sauce plus more as needed
  • 2-4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 6-8 thin slices provolone cheese

INSTRUCTIONS

INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Heat oven broiler to high.
  2. Using drippings from roast beef pan, spoon out most of the oil, if applicable. Place roasting pan over medium-high heat on stove top. Add beef stock and soy sauce to the pan and, using a wooden (or non-abrasive) spoon, scrape off browned bits from the pan. Bring to a simmer and cook until reduced by half, about 8-10 minutes. If the sauce is too salty, add more beef broth. If not salty enough, add more soy sauce, as needed, until it reaches desired flavor.
  3. Slice hoagie rolls in half, lengthwise. Spread a thin layer of butter over each half (top and bottom) of the roll. Place rolls, butter side up, on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. Place bread under the broiler and broil until butter is melted and bread starts to turn golden brown. Careful not to let bread burn. Once golden brown, remove from oven. Take the “tops” off the baking sheet and set aside. Leave the “bottoms” on the baking sheet for later. Keep broiler on.
  4. Slice roast beef into very, very thin slices. Place slices in hot Au Jus on the stove and cook for 1 minute. Using tongs or a fork, carefully remove roast beef slices and layer on each “bottom” half of the sandwich with the desired amount. Top each with a slice of provolone cheese and replace under the broiler until cheese is melted about 1-2 minutes.
  5. Remove from broiler and place the “top” half on each sandwich. Slice each french dip in half and serve alongside a small cup of Au Jus (and a dab of horseradish, if desired) for dipping.

Adapted from the  website asweetpeachef.com >>

 

Marinating Tricks and Tips

What to use in a marinade

Marinades vary from recipe to recipe but they usually contain  – acids, oils and seasonings.

Acids

Acids tenderize meat by unravels its proteins by softening the surface and allowing flavours to be absorbed. Acids to choose from are vinegar, wine, sherry, citrus juice, yoghurt and buttermilk.

Yoghurt and buttermilk keep foods moist,  but a citrus-based marinade can “cook” raw fish.

OILS

The oil locks in the flavour of the food and helps prevent drying out. Some oils add flavour.  Some good oils to use for marinating are olive, sesame, peanut and infused oils (such as chilli).

Seasonings

Seasonings add unique flavours. Garlic, ginger and onion are some to name, but you can also use fresh herbs and chilli to spice things up, or honey and sugar to sweeten it up. Seasonings also include soy sauce, sriracha, citrus peel, mustard, salt and pepper, and herbs and spices.

Marinating basics

According to Taste.au

The longer food is left to marinate, the more flavoursome it will be. That is the general rule. You need to know that the ideal marinating time usually depends on what you’re marinating, the size of the ingredients and the type of marinade you are using.

For best results, follow these general guidelines and see our chart below.

  • Small or tender cuts, such as lamb and beef fillets, chicken breasts and seafood, require shorter marinating times (usually two to four hours). Larger or tougher cuts such as leg, rump or shoulder will need longer (usually four to six hours).
  • Be careful when using acidic marinades. Foods left too long in these blends can change colour and texture. Fish fillets, for example, can change in a matter of minutes.

Guide to marinating times

Ingredient Examples Marinating time
Meats, such as lamb, beef & pork Steaks, chops, diced 2-4 hours
Whole roast 4-6 hours (or overnight)
Poultry Fillets, cutlets, wings, drumsticks 2-4 hours
Whole roast 4-6 hours (or overnight)
Seafood Prawns, octopus and squid 1-2 hours
Fish Whole fish, steaks, fillets 2-4 hours

Dry Rubs

Not all marinades need to contain liquid ingredients – some consist of only dry ingredients, such as herbs and spices. These mixtures are often referred to as “rubs” (because they are literally rubbed onto the surface of your food). Once the rub is applied to your meat, chicken or fish, cover the dish with plastic wrap and place in the fridge to marinate.

Safety tips

  • Marinades used for raw meat or poultry can be used to baste ingredients as they cook, or for a sauce, but they need to be boiled first. Place the marinade in a saucepan over high heat and boil for 5 minutes. This will kill any harmful bacteria.
  • Marinate meat, chicken and fish in the fridge to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

Taco Salad for a Group

INGREDIENTS

 

  • 1-1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 envelopes taco seasoning, divided
  • 1 medium head iceberg lettuce
  • 1 package (10 ounces) nacho-flavored tortilla chips, coarsely crushed
  • 2 pints grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 cans (16 ounces each) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 cans (2-1/4 ounces each) sliced ripe olives, drained
  • 1-1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 large sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 cans (4 ounces each) chopped green chilies
  • 1-1/2 cups Thousand Island salad dressing
  • 1-1/3 cups salsa
  • 1/3 cup sugar

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. In a Dutch oven over medium heat, cook beef with 1 envelope plus 2 tablespoons taco seasoning until no longer pink; drain.
  2. In a very large serving bowl, combine the lettuce, chips, tomatoes, beans, olives, cheese, onion, chilies and beef mixture.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the salad dressing, salsa, sugar and remaining taco seasoning; pour over salad and toss to coat.

 

Rolled Grilled Cheeses

INGREDIENTS

  • 8 slices white bread*, crusts trimmed
  • 8 slices Wisconsin cheddar cheese*
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter

  

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Using a rolling pin, flatten bread squares to 1/4-inch thickness.
  2. Place cheese slice on top of each slice of bread, rolling up tightly.
  3. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add roll ups to the skillet, cooking until all sides are golden brown and the cheese has melted, about 3-4 minutes, adding more butter as needed.
  4. Serve immediately.