Biscuit Bliss

Well I made more biscuits this weekend – and they turned out oh so good.   More on that recipe comes later.

This recipe has been seen all over pinterest, other blogs, just about everywhere.   If you haven’t made them, you need to because once you do, you may never turn back to any other biscuit recipe again.   Just make a pan and see what I mean.

 

7-up Biscuits

2 cups Bisquick Mix

1/2 cup sour cream

1/2 cup 7-up

1/4 cup melted butter (salted or unsalted – doesn’t matter)

 

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Pour melted butter in a 9″ square pan. Cut sour cream into bisquick mix.  Add 7-Up and stir to combine.  Dough will be a soft, sticky dough.  Sprinkle counter with Bisquick and dump dough on to counter.  Sprinkle top of dough with small amount of mix in order to knead dough.  Pat out dough to 3/4 inch thick and cut with biscuit cutter or cut into squares and place in pan with melted butter.   Place in oven and bake approx. 15 minutes or until golden.

 Makes about 9 – this recipe easily doubles if you need to make more.

 

These fluff up so pretty and are so incredibly good.  So if you have made them, let me know how you like them.  If you haven’t, make some and come back and tell us how yours turned out.   Have a great week!

 

Another one bites the dust….

We have another grandkiddo to graduate this year – high school – which puts 4 of our grandkiddos in college – in the fall of 2014 we will have in college a senior, a junior, a sophomore, and a freshman.  Stepping stones!   And to celebrate we always gather together and partake of some bodacious viddles.   This year we are mixing things up like I previously said and brunch will abound.  Another recipe we will have will be one we will be drinking – Applewood Julep! If you have ever been to the mountains of Tennessee, you may  have enjoyed this at the Apple Barn Restaurant.   This is so good and refreshing.   And just right for breakfast or brunch.  Make some this weekend and sit out on the veranda (or your back porch or stoop) and enjoy the birds!

Applewood Julep

1 quart unsweetened apple juice, chilled

1 cup unsweetened pineapple juice, chilled

1 cup orange juice, chilled

1/4 cup lemon juice, chilled

fresh mint sprigs (optional)

Combine first 4 ingredients with ice cubes, mix well.  Garnish servings with mint if desired.   Makes about 6 1/4 cups.  

Cabbage Rolls – Beef or Turkey

i made Cabbage Rolls this weekend – I divided the ingredients in half in two bowls and used 1/2 lb ground beef for hubby and 1/2 ground turkey for me.  I used 6 of the 12 cabbage leaves for hubby’s and 6 (actually only 5 – ground turkey is less dense than ground beef and I only got 5 out of the turkey which was fine for me) so we both got rolls (with 2 you get egg rolls…name that movie!)

So you see….. just about any recipe can be adapted to your tastes/likes.   The sauce for this recipe is so good – it is so much more than just a can poured over your rolls and gives so much flavor to the cabbage rolls – make some for your supper.  I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Meat Stuffing:

12 cabbage leaves

1 pound ground beef

3/4 cup cooked rice

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup milk

Sauce:

1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce

1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes, un-drained

3 Tbsp sugar

2 Tbsp vinegar

1/2 cup water

2 Tbsp cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup cold water (will be used to thicken the sauce after rolls are cooked)

Drop cabbage leaves into boiling salted water (I find by cooking 6 at a time they do better); cover and cook for 3 minutes.  Drain well.   In bowl, combine meat, rice, onion, garlic, egg, salt, pepper, and milk.  Mix well and divide between all 12 cabbage rolls, placing in center of each cabbage leaf.  roll leaf around filling, fasten with toothpick.  Place in baking dish.  

For sauce, combine tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, sugar, vinegar and water and pour over cabbage rolls.   Bake covered in a preheated 350 degree oven for 45 minutes.   Remove rolls and discard toothpicks.  Place pan with juices (if metal pan you can place directly on stove eye – if you used a glass pan pour juices in to a sauce pan); over medium heat and stir cornstarch/water mixture into the sauce; bring to a boil and cook and whisk until thickened.  pour thickened sauce over cabbage rolls or serve on the side.  

Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we have!   Enjoy your week!  

I can’t believe you ate the whole pack!

If you make these – they will eat the whole pack…and if they don’t, you will.   Man, these were good.   Hubby especially liked these for some reason.   I can;t make these too often, as I believe he would eat the whole pan right by himself.   I hope those of you who live up north have Sister Schubert Rolls, and if not, find some that are close to these.     

These Italian seasoned garlic buttered tops  with sprinkled on Parmesan cheese were so good – and by slicing the rolls with a knife in half ( just take a small knife and go around the pan and slice the rolls in half – you want to be able to just pinch off a piece of a roll – like monkey bread) you get a “sliva” of a piece of heaven.  Yep – that good.  But if you want, just leave them like they are for a larger portion.  We liked the smaller “bite size” portions, though.  

Go get you some Sister Schubert Rolls – and make my take on these -

Italian Seasoned Parmesan pull apart rolls

 1 package of Sister Schubert Rolls, thawed

1 stick butter, softened

2 tsp Italian seasoning (or any combination or brand of Italian seasoning mix you prefer-or blend your own)

1/2 to 1 tsp garlic powder (your preference as to how much – some like more than others)

Pinch of salt

1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (I used the kind you find on the Italian aisle as that is the kind I had – the kind you sprinkle on pizza-but you can use fresh grated if you want)

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Blend softened butter, Italian seasoning blend garlic powder and pinch of salt in small bowl.   Spread this delicious mixture over top of rolls, making sure to cover all.   Sprinkle with 1/4 cup parmesan cheese.   Bake for 15 – 20 minutes, or until the rolls are golden around the outside.  

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Enjoy!

Peanut Butter and granola – make it today!

I made just about the easiest granola I have ever made this weekend.  4 ingredients!  How easy is that?  (ok – i added one more to hubby’s – he has to have raisins in just about everything he eats).

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This peanut butter granola is so good, you will find yourself munching on it as a snack!  Next time I make this I am adding some chocolate chips and chopped pecans to my batch – hubby can keep his raisins!  

Here’s the handy dandy recipe – did i mention how easy these 4 ingredients are?

 

Peanut Butter Granola

2 cups old fashioned oats

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

1/4 cup honey

2 Tbsp packed light brown sugar (note: I used my  Splenda Brown sugar – worked fine!)

Directions:

1.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Pour oats in to mixing bowl, set aside.

2.  In a microwaveable mixing bowl, combine peanut butter, honey and brown sugar and heat in microwave until runny and smooth, about 25-40 seconds, stirring once during process.   You can also use a small saucepan and add peanut butter, honey and brown sugar and heat on medium until just runny and smooth, stirring while heating.  Pour mixture over oats and stir until oats are evenly coated.

3.  Spread mix onto a silpat or parchment lined baking sheet in an even layer and bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes, stirring once halfway through baking.  Allow to cool completely (it won’t get crunchy until it is cooled), and store in an airtight container.   

 

I store mine in mason jars, as you can see.   I love my mason jars!   Make yours and let us know what you serve yours on.  Happy Monday!

Mini-Cinnis or Cinni-Minis – Good no matter what you call them

A tradition started by our oldest grandson’s graduation from high school, our family gathers sometime in May to celebrate the graduating senior’s accomplishments and wish him/her well as he/she departs into their next grown-up (or almost grown-up) steps of life – wherever it is taking them.

This year Grandchild #4 graduates high school and as tradition has it, we are gathering again.  This time, we are changing up a bit and having a Graduation Brunch for the family!  What fun, and what food!   We also hope it accommodates one graduating senior with her work schedule! HA! Got to make that money!

One item we will be serving is quite simple and quite delicious – these cini minis – or mini-cinis, whichever you prefer to call them.  And when they use refrigerated crescent rolls, you can’t get any easier than that.  Make some at your house and they will vanish – just like they will at our shindig.

Now the recipe is certainly a guide – add-subtract on any of the amounts below – make this your recipe with more or less of the flavors you like!  I have asked one of the kiddos to bring this for me to the shindig and she will certainly make the recipe how she sees fit!  And it will be awesome.

Cinni-Minis (or Mini-Cinnis) – you pick the name!

(double for a crowd!)

2 (8-ounce) cans refrigerated crescent rolls

6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened

1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar

¼ cup chopped pecans

1 Tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2/3 cup powdered sugar

1 Tbsp milk or half and half

¼ teaspoon almond or vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon salt

Unroll crescent rolls and at this point you can either keep it in one long roll and pinch seams together, or if you work better with smaller portions, separate into 4 rectangles and press diagonal perforations to seal.  

Stir together butter and next 4 ingredients; spread evenly over 1 side of each rectangle.  Roll up jellyroll fashion, starting at long end.  Gently cut eachlog into 1-inch thick slices (makes about 6) using a serrated knife.   Place rolls, ¼ inch apart, into 2 (8-9nch) greased cake pans.  Bake at 375 degrees preheated oven, for 5-18 minutes or until golden.  Stir together the powdered sugar and remaining ingredients.  Once the rolls have cooled for about 5 to 10 minutes, drizzle over warm rolls.   – If you like more icing, just make more and coat those babies!   Eat and enjoy!

Le Creuset….you don’t say!

Congrats to the following who are now in the winning lane!  If you want the pictures of the actual random.org, email me – since there are 4 I won’t put the pictures up – just the winners that were drawn.

Let’s give away the beautiful stoneware 3-quart pots -

Winner #1 – random.org selected #13 – Susan Lambert! Susan will get the beautiful blue 3-quart Le Creuset stoneware casserole dish

Winner # 2 – random.org selected #12 – Margaret McGuire! Margaret receives the white 3-quart Le Creuset stoneware casserole dish

Winner #3 – random.org selected # 22 – ChristiL – ChristiL receives the Sisal (the brown) 3-quart Le Creuset stoneware casserole dish

And the final winner – random.rog selected # 20- Jenny – and she will receive the set of 3 – 8-ounce bowls that has all three colors!

 

Congratulations to all 4 winners and stay tuned for more recipes and giveaways!   At least until December 2014! Retirement is coming quickly!

Happy April Fool’s Day! No Joke on this Giveaway

One of the grandsons is away at college and while we miss seeing him, on today, it could be a good thing.  Because if he were here, there surely would be a prank on his grammy.   He does love to try and prank his grammy on April 1 and always could pull one off.  What can I say – I am quite gullible. 

That’s the last thing I want to do on April Fools Day is get pranked!   But I am excited because Le Creuset is releasing their three new colors today….. Mineral Blue, Sisal, and Cotton.   They are so pretty and are a Matte color and if you haven’t seen them you need to!

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This little set of three is so cute and has all three colors in it! These 8 ounce sizes are perfect for French onion soup – brown off that cheese and dig in! 

I love this 3 qt round casserole in their Stoneware line – this little baby will go in the freezer, the oven, the microwave, the dishwasher and is a great size for that pot pie, those veggie casseroles, and cobblers.  And this comes in the three new colors.

 

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Today, because it is April 1st, and because someone may have played a joke on you (teeheehee) I am giving away 1 (3 piece set) of the 8-ounce mini cocottes (has one of each color!) and I am giving away three(3) of the 3-quart round casseroles in the stoneware line – one in each color!    That means 4 of you have the chance to win!  

To be in the drawing to win one of the 4 Le Creuset prizes, just leave a comment and tell us if you were “pranked” or if you “pranked” someone!  Winners will be drawn Thursday morning, April 3rd so hurry and comment. Have a great and fun April 1st!

Sweet tea – it’s not just for drinking

Hubby is in charge of cooking tomorrow.   He wants his fresh fish one of our sweet neighbors gave him (the kind that came out of our lake/river we live near and I don’t eat) and he has some chicken he will be cooking on the grill for me.  Mine is going to be cooked on the grill and I am going to brine mine first – in a sweet tea brine.  Yep- and it is going to be so good.  I have wanted to try this process for some time and looks like tomorrow is the day. The bring has fresh rosemary.  Have I told you lately how much I love fresh rosemary?  I will be planting my own just after Easter.   (I was taught not to plant until after Easter – and I can’t seem to get that little instilled lesson out of my mind – sort of like not wearing white until Easter).

I hope you will try it.   And go and cook you up some chicken, or something else on the grill – its the one thing I am excited about with the coming of Spring.  Outdoor cooking!

Sweet Tea-Brined Chicken

2 family-sized tea bags

1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar (I will use my Splenda brown sugar and it will work just fine)

1/4 cup kosher salt

1 small sweet onion, thinly sliced

1 lemon, thinly sliced

3 garlic cloves, halved

2 (6-inch) fresh rosemary sprigs

1 Tbsp freshly cracked pepper

2 cups ice cubes

1 whole chicken, cut up (or the pieces you prefer)

1. Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a 3-qt heavy saucepan; add tea bags.  Remove from heat; cover and steep 10 minutes.

2.  Discard tea bags.  Stir in brown sugar and next 6 ingredients, stirring until sugar dissolves.  Cool completely (about 45 minutes to an hour); stir in ice.   (Mixture should be cold before adding chicken.)

3.  Place tea mixture and chicken in a large zip-top plastic freezer bag; seal.  Place bag in a shallow baking dish and chill 24 hours.   Remove chicken from marinade, discarding marinade; pat chicken dry with paper towels.

4.  Light one side of grill, heating to 300 to 350 degrees (medium) heat; leave other side unlit.  Place chicken, skin side down, over unlit side.  and grill, covered with grill lid, 20 minutes.  Turn chicken, and grill, covered with grill lid, 40 to 50 minutes or until done.  Transfer chicken, skin side down, to lit side of grill, and grill 2 to 3 minutes or until skin is crispy.  Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

 

Now since it is just the two of us, I mostly cook with skinless/boneless chicken breasts, or boneless chicken thighs (with skin either on or off, depending on what the store has that week), and usually at least 5-8 pieces, since that is also how many are in the package (and we like to slice up on salads for leftovers) I am certain that the grill master (aka hubby) will most likely change #4 above.   He will most likely cook over the fire – on medium – as he usually does.   

So in # 4 above, I say, if you are a griller, cook YOUR chicken, depending on whether you are using bone-in or bone-out, the way YOU normally cook your chicken and for the length of time YOU normally cook YOUR chicken to get it done.   I am certainly not one to tell anyone how to grill.

I am just saying try this recipe – I do believe you will like it!  

Vintage Cake

I have to make a cake for two different occasions – I think this is the one I am making.   Man, it may not make it there.  Brownie base, from a box, chocolate sauce on top of the brownie, soaked in the brownie, then the cake layers, from a box,  traditional cream cheese frosting, man, oh, man.  Easy peasy.

Think it will work well in an auction?   Think it will serve well at a church function?  Make it and see how well it works on your family this Spring.  

 

Vintage Cake

Cake ingredients:

1 box white cake mix

1 box brownie mix

2 squares (2 ounces) semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

7 ounces sweetened condensed milk (half of a 14-ounce can)

Cream Cheese Frosting:

1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 cups confectioner’s sugar

1/4 cup milk

Prepare white cake as directed on the box, and pour into two prepared 9-inch round cake pans.  Allow cakes to cool completely.

Prepare brownie mix as directed, baking in a 9-inch prepared round cake pan. (If you use 8-inch pans for your cake mix, make sure and use 8-inch round pan for your brownie mix also.)

To make the chocolate sauce, place the chocolate, sweetened condensed milk and 1 tablespoon water in a small saucepan and over low heat stir until the chocolate is melted.(about 5 minutes)

While the brownies are still very warm, place the brownie layer on a cake stand.  Slowly pour the chocolate sauce on top, letting it soak into the brownie.  Allow the sauce to soak in for at least 30 minutes or until completely soaked and brownie has completely cooled.

 

To make the frosting:combine the cream cheese, butter and vanilla in a stand mixer and mix on medium speed until combined, about 1 or 2 minutes.  Add the confectioner’s sugar 1 cup at a time, until the frosting is light and creamy.   To thicken/stiffen the frosting (depending on your preference) just add more confectioner’s sugar 1/4 cup at a time.  If the frosting is too stiff, add milk 1 tablespoon at a time.

Place a white cake layer on top of the brownie layer and top with approx. 1/4 cup of the frosting, and spread.

Add the second white cake layer and complete the icing of the sides and top with the remaining icing.  Chill until serving.  

 

And just think about the combinations you can make with this – how about making a chocolate cake on top of that brownie – with a chocolate buttercream frosting….chocolate heaven!  i also think it would be good with a strawberry cake on top of the brownie with strawberry cream cheese frosting…. great for Valentine’s Day.   What would you combine!   Oh…and put a red velvet cake on that brownie…bingo.  

Let me know how you enjoy this one!   Have a great day! And if you have time, go to www.lecreuset.com/ website and look at their new MATTE colors.  Oh my.   GORGEOUS…. and there may be a future giveaway in these colors!   So see what your favorite would be!  Those colors are not out until the first of April but a sneak peak will surely put you in the mood for Spring and a great giveaway.