Cheesy Garlic Bread

INGREDIENTS

5 garlic cloves, finely minced (click here for a tutorial on working with fresh garlic)
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 18-20-inch baguette or loaf of french bread, sliced in half horizontally
1 1/2 cup shredded cheese (I used a blend of Parmesan and mozzarella and my aunt uses just Parmesan – you can tailor this to what you have on hand but I think a mix of white cheeses would be best)

DIRECTIONS

Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 400.
In a small nonstick skillet, cook the garlic, 1 tablespoon of the butter and water over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is straw colored, 7-10 minutes. It is important to keep the heat low or the garlic will burn and turn bitter. The garlic should be lightly browned but not burned!
In a small bowl, place the remaining 7 tablespoons softened butter and the salt and pepper. Mix in the hot garlic mixture and stir to combine. Using a rubber spatula, spread the butter mixture on the cut sides of bread. Sandwich the bread back together and wrap the loaf in foil. Place the wrapped loaf on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
Remove from the heat and turn the oven to the broil setting.
Sprinkle the bread with the shredded cheese. Broil until cheese has melted and bread is crisp, 1-2 minutes. (As my Aunt Marilyn points out, don’t take your hand off the oven door while the bread is broiling – it can burn quickly!) Transfer the bread to a cutting board with the cheese side facing down. Cut into angled pieces and serve. Please try to exert self-control and share the bounty with others at the table.

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Quinoa Burrito Bowl

PREP TIME
10 mins
COOK TIME
15 mins
TOTAL TIME
25 mins
Serves: 2 people

INGREDIENTS
Avocado-Lime Dressing
½ cup greek yogurt
1 avocado
1 cup cilantro
2 garlic cloves
2 limes zested and juiced
2 jalapeños
2 tablespoons mint, roughly chopped
½ teaspoon Kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Quinoa Bowl:
1 cup quinoa
1 lime zested and juiced
½ cup cilantro, roughly chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 romaine heart, chopped
1 15 ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 15 ounce can whole kernel corn
½ pint grape tomatoes, sliced lengthwise
¼ cup red onion, diced
1 avocado, diced

Heavenly Blueberry and Cream Angel Dessert

YIELD: SERVES 8

So here’s the deal, it depends on what type of angel food cake you are using to determine how much of it you need. You need about one angel food cake. According to my Aunt Marilyn, a storebought angel food cake is the perfect size. I made this while my mom was visiting; she made an angel food cake from a cake mix and we used almost all of it in the dessert (minus the amount that exploded in my oven and the pieces we snacked on – so I’d say we used 3/4 of the cake). I’m guessing that my homemade angel food cake recipe would be just about perfect since it is slightly less tall than a cake mix angel food cake. Basically, just keep an eye on the cream/cake mixture – only add cake cubes while they are all evenly coated with a thick layer of cream. Too many cake cubes and it might dry out (especially if it is made in advance). Speaking of making it ahead, this can be assembled and refrigerated up to 24 hours in advance.

INGREDIENTS

Blueberry Filling:
    • 12 ounces frozen blueberries
    • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
    • 1/4 cup cold water
    • Squeeze of fresh lemon juice (about 1/2 tablespoon)
Cake and Cream:
    • Baked, cooled and cubed angel food cake (see note)
    • 16 ounces light cream cheese, softened to room temperature
    • 2/3 cup half-and-half or evaporated milk (I used 1 cup the second time because it was so thick)
    • 2/3 cup granulated sugar (also used 1 cup the second time)
Whipped Cream:
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream 
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar (I used

DIRECTIONS

  1. For the blueberry filling, in a medium saucepan, combine the blueberries, sugar, cornstarch, water and lemon juice. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook until thickened, 5-7 minutes, stirring often. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
  2. For the cake and cream layer, in a blender or with an electric mixer (handheld or stand mixer), whip together the cream cheese, half-and-half or evaporated milk and sugar until smooth and creamy. Transfer the mixture to a bowl if you used a blender. Fold in the angel food cake cubes. Keep in mind (from the note above) that you may not use all the cake cubes, especially if using an angel food cake mix. Add cake cubes until they are all thickly coated with a layer of cream. If making this in advance, it can dry out if there is too much angel food cake added.
  3. For the whipped cream, beat together the heavy cream and powdered sugar until peaks form.
  4. To assemble, in a trifle dish or in a large glass bowl, spread half of the angel food cake mixture. Top with half of the blueberries, spreading evenly across, and then spread half of the sweetened whipped cream. Repeat the layers.
  5. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours. Serve chilled.

Recipe Source: adapted from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe

Toffee Brownie Trifle

1 package Fudge Brownie mix (9-in x 13-in pan)
2 1/2 cups cold milk
1 (3.4-ounce) package instant cheesecake or vanilla pudding
1 (3.4-ounce) package instant white chocolate pudding mix
1 (8-ounce) frozen whipped topping, thawed
3 large **Heath candy bars, chopped

DIRECTIONS:
Prepare and bake brownies according to package directions for cake-like brownies, using a greased 9-in. by 13-in. pan. Cool completely.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the milk and pudding mixes on low speed for 2 minutes (may need a shield for splatters). Fold in whipped topping. Cut the brownies into 1-in. cubes or break up with hands; place half in a 3-qt. glass trifle bowl or serving dish. Cover with half of the pudding and sprinkle with chopped candy bars. Repeat layers. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

**Can use any type of candy bar: Butterfinger, Skor, Twix, etc.

Source: The Pampered Chef

Creamy White Chicken Enchiladas

12oz. (1 1/2 pkgs) cream cheese, softened
2 Tablespoons water
3 teaspoons onion powder
3 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3 cups cooked chicken, diced or shredded
2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
8 flour tortillas
3 Tablespoons butter
3 Tablespoons flour
1 – 15oz. can chicken broth (or 2 cups)
1 cup sour cream
1 – 4oz. can diced green chilies

PREHEAT OVEN: to 350 degrees

DIRECTIONS:
In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese, water, onion powder, cumin, salt and pepper until smooth. Stir in chicken and 1 cup of cheese. Roll up in tortillas and place in pan seam side down.

In a small sauce pan over medium heat, melt butter. Whisk in flour and cook 1 minute. Add broth and whisk until smooth. Allow sauce to thicken. Remove from heat and stir in sour cream and chilies.

Pour sauce over enchiladas and top with remaining cheese. Bake 20-25 minutes and then broil for a few minutes to brown the cheese.

Honey-Lime Chicken Enchiladas

6 Tbsp honey
5 Tbsp lime juice (1 large lime)
1 Tbsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
8-10 flour tortillas
1 pound chicken, cooked and shredded (about 3 small chicken breasts)
1 pound Monterey jack cheese, shredded
1 – 16oz. can Hatch green enchilada sauce
1 cup heavy cream

PREHEAT OVEN: to 350 degrees

DIRECTIONS:
Mix the first four ingredients and toss with shredded chicken. Let it marinate for at least 30 minutes (or use a Ziploc bag and let it sit in refrigerator all day).

Pour about 1/2 cup enchilada sauce on the bottom of a 9×13-inch baking pan. Fill flour tortillas with chicken and shredded cheese, saving about 1 cup of cheese to sprinkle on top of enchiladas.

Mix the remaining enchilada sauce with the cream and leftover marinade. Pour sauce on top of the enchiladas and sprinkle with cheese.

Bake for 30 minutes until brown and crispy on top.

Creamy Confetti Corn with Bacon

8 slices bacon, chopped
2 – 12oz. packages frozen corn kernels, white or yellow
1/2 cup chopped onion (white, yellow or red)
1/2 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1 – 8oz. package cream cheese, cubed (light or regular)
1-2 Tablespoons milk or cream
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
4 green onions, green parts finely chopped (discard white)

Directions:
In a large nonstick skillet, cook the chopped bacon until golden and crisp. Scoop the bacon to a paper towel lined plate and discard all the grease except for a thin coating on the pan.

Add the corn, onion, and red pepper, and cook over medium heat, stirring every so often, until the vegetables are tender and the corn is heated through, 6-8 minutes. Add the cream cheese and milk, stirring until the cream cheese melts and the mixture is evenly combined.

Stir in the sugar, salt and pepper. Add more salt to taste if needed. Stir in the green onions.
Serve warm topped with the reserved bacon.
This dish can be made up to 2 days ahead of time. Scoop the creamy corn mixture into an oven-safe dish, sprinkle with the bacon and cover with a lid or plastic wrap. Store in the refrigerator. When ready to eat, heat the corn dish in a 325 degree oven for 15-20 minutes until heated through.

Recipe from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe