Sep 18, 2011

Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

I just made a batch of this frosting for a pan of pumpkin chocolate chip bars. It is SO delicious! I had to fight the urge to consume most of it before I even put it on the cake.

1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Milk, as needed, to achieve proper frosting consistency

In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy. Mix in the vanilla, then gradually stir in the confectioners' sugar. Add milk, as needed, until frosting is of a suitable consistency for spreading. Store in the refrigerator after use. Makes enough to frost an 11 x 13-inch cake.

Sep 11, 2011

Curried Cauliflower

Who doesn't need another recipe for cooking cauliflower? ;-) Like parents with their kids, I'm always trying to get myself to eat my vegetables, so I appreciated the simplicity and taste of this side dish. The recipe comes from Mel's Kitchen Cafe.

1 medium head cauliflower
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon curry powder

Preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Wash and core the cauliflower and cut the florets into bite-size pieces. Place in a large bowl. Toss the cauliflower with the olive oil, salt and curry powder. Turn out the cauliflower onto a large rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 16-18 minutes, stirring every 6-7 minutes, until the cauliflower is browned in spots and is crisp-tender. Serve immediately. Serves 4 to 6 people.

Chicken Salad

I posted another chicken salad recipe very recently, and here is yet another. But I prefer this one to that one. I love the crunchiness of the celery and water chestnuts (I also added some slivered almonds, which the recipe doesn't call for), and this salad has a little bacon thrown in. The one thing I didn't do was add the grapes the recipe calls for, which I will try next time, and I'll also try salad dressing instead of mayonnainse. The original recipe comes from one of a raft of chicken salad recipes on allrecipes.com.

2 1/2 cups diced cooked chicken
4 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
1 (8 ounce) can sliced water chestnuts, drained
1/2 cup thinly sliced celery
1 cup halved green grapes
3/4 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing
1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
2 teaspoons finely minced onion
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 dash Worcestershire sauce
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine chicken, bacon, water chestnuts, celery and grapes in large bowl; set aside. In another bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients; add to salad and toss to coat. Chill until serving.

Sep 3, 2011

Sweet & Sour Meatballs

My sister Emily made these the other day for a family party, and everyone loved them, especially the kids. Many family members went back for seconds. Of course, what I also like about this dish is that it couldn't be easier--pre-cooked meatballs and a quick sauce. And these meatballs can be served as an appetizer or over rice for a main dish.

1 cup chili sauce
1 cup grape jelly
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 6-pound bag of Kirkland pre-cooked meatballs (I prefer to NOT get the Italian flavored meatballs but it won't make that big of a difference)

Put all ingredients in a crockpot and cook on high for about 4 hours. Stir meatballs several times during the cooking process.