Sunday, March 17, 2013

New Recipes

We like to try new recipes and thanks to the internet and Pinterest we have a few to share. ENJOY!!

The first is Paula Dean's Crock pot Potato Soup.  Everyone loved this recipe and next time I will make a double batch and add ham.  We sprinkled bacon bits on top and that was good too.
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1 (30 oz.) bag frozen hash-brown potatoes (I used shredded hash browns because that is what I had in the freezer)
2 (14 oz.) cans chicken broth
1 (10.75 oz.) can cream of chicken soup
1/2 c chopped onion
1/3 tsp. ground black pepper
1 (8oz) package cream cheese (softened)
Garnish: minced green onion
1. In a slow cooker, combine potatoes, broth, soup, onion, and pepper.
2. Cover, and cook on low for 5 hours.
3. Stir in cream cheese, cook 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until combined.
4. Garnish with green onion.
The next is Baked Garlic Brown Sugar Chicken.  I made this when we had the missionaries over for dinner and served it with a pan of Funeral Potatoes.  It's one of the easiest recipes I've ever made and it was DELICIOUS!
Baked Garlic Brown Sugar Chicken
    • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
    • 4 garlic cloves, minced
    • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
    • 3 teaspoons olive oil
Preheat oven to 500°F and lightly grease a casserole dish.
  1. In small sauté pan, sauté garlic with the oil until tender.
  2. Remove from heat and stir in brown sugar.
  3. Place chicken breasts in a prepared baking dish and cover with the garlic and brown sugar mixture.
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Bake uncovered for 15-30 minutes
This next soup recipe we made and everyone liked it except Kendall.  It reminded me of the soup from Olive Garden.
Creamy Italian Sausage and Potato Soup
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound of ground Italian pork sausage (I used mild)
6-8 cups of chicken broth
5 small russet potatoes, washed and cut into 1 inch cubes with the skins still on
1/2 cup of fresh basil, roughly chopped
1/2 cup of fresh parsley, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon of red pepper flakes (more if you like spicy)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup of organic half and half
2 cups of coarsely cut spinach
1/4 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Place the olive oil in a large pan over a medium-high heat. When the pan is hot add the onion and garlic and saute until the onion gets soft. At this point add the Italian Sausage and cook until its browned. Our sausage isn’t very greasy so I didn’t need to pour any out, if your sausage produces a lot of grease pour some off before adding the soup.
In a large stock pot over medium-high heat add in the chicken broth, potatoes, basil, parsley, red pepper flakes, pepper and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and bring to a simmer, allow to simmer for 20 minutes.
After the soup has been simmering add the sausage, onion and garlic mixture and cook another 5-10 minutes. After it is done simmering, add in the half and half and stir. Reduce the heat and be sure it doesn’t boil. Cook another 2 minutes. Taste the soup, add more salt and pepper to taste. More red pepper flakes if you want it spicier.
Remove the soup from the heat, add in the spinach and cover. Let it sit for an additional 3-5 minutes until the spinach is cooked.  Ladle the soup in your bowls and sprinkle with a little parmesan cheese.
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This picture is floating around on Pinterest, but when you click on it you get sent to a place to order these from some company.  I decided to try them on my own so I mixed up a batch of brownie batter and a batch of chocolate chip cookie dough.  I used my cookie scoop to drop some brownie batter then a scoop of cookie dough.  Mine didn't look like this when they were done baking.  If I ever make them again I will use my smaller scoop for the brownie batter and the regular size for the cookie dough.  I think that will make the finished product look more even.  Mine looked like a small drop of cookie surrounded by a big brownie.  They tasted good but it was hard to tell the difference between the cookie and brownie.
These homemade Twix bars were delicious.  The crust was crumbly, just like several people wrote in the comments.  I decreased the flour and baking time but it was still crumbly.  So, so good though.
Thousand Dollar Bars (aka homemade Twix bars)
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Shortbread Layer:
1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, at room temperature
1 cup confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups flour
Caramel Layer:
2 cups caramel, cut into small chunks
3 tablespoons heavy cream
Chocolate Layer:
3 cups chopped milk chocolate or dark chocolate, melted
1 tablespoon vegetable shortening (optional)
1) FOR THE CRUST: Preheat your oven to 300°F. Spray a 9" x 13" pan lightly with cooking spray, or line with parchment, and set aside.
2) In a medium-sized bowl, beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla. Add the flour. At first the mixture may seem dry, but will come together as you continue to beat at medium speed.
3) Take the dough (it will be somewhat stiff) and press it evenly into the pan. Lightly flouring your fingertips will help with any sticking.
4) Prick the crust all over with a fork. The holes will allow steam to escape and the crust will bake evenly with fewer bubbles.
5) Bake the crust until it's lightly golden brown on top and the edges are deeper golden brown, about 35 to 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately run a knife around the edges to loosen the crust. Set it aside to cool completely.
6) FOR THE CARAMEL LAYER: Melt the caramel and cream over low heat in a small saucepan. Pour the caramel over the cooled crust and set in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to chill and firm up.
7) FOR THE CHOCOLATE LAYER: Melt the milk or dark chocolate slowly in a double boiler or over very low heat. If it seems very thick, add a tablespoon of shortening to thin it. Pour evenly over the chilled caramel layer and spread to cover all of the caramel. Return to the fridge until the chocolate is well set. Cut into 2" x 2" squares to serve. It's best to store these bars in the refrigerator.
8) These bars can also be cut and dipped in milk chocolate to resemble Twix ® bars. After the caramel layer has chilled firm, cut down the length of the pan, splitting the bars into two long, narrow bars. Then cut each long strip into "fingers". Dip the chilled bars into melted chocolate and place on parchment paper to set for several hours.

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