Archive for the ‘Cooking’ Category

Breakfast is probably my favorite meal of the day. Well, next to lunch of course… Then again, dinner rocks pretty hard too… Then there’s snack time… Oh never mind! :)

When Mom was still with me one of our favorite rituals was Sunday breakfast. I’d make a big meal with (usually) some type of pancake or waffle, bacon, coffee, juice or whatever took our fancy. I’ve made some amazing meals and a few (okay, maybe more than a few…) disasters.

Note: If you have an inclination toward making black walnut waffles…make sure your walnuts are chopped to the nth degree. Mine got stuck in the crevasses and needless say…many innocent waffles were ravaged that day!

But when it comes to pancakes, I am the Pancake Goddess Extraordinaire! Mine are so good they’ll make you sit up and slap your mama! Below is my quick and easy recipe for Applesauce pancakes using Bisquick. Some mornings I’d be running late and using a boxed baking mix is a great time saver.

Applesauce Pancakes

2 cups Bisquick Baking Mix (or Jiffy)

1 cup applesauce

1/2 cup cold milk

2 eggs

2-3 teaspoons cinnamon

Mix together until it reaches the consistency you like. A thicker mix will yield heavier pancakes while a thinner mix will make them thin and crispy. Heat your frying pan or griddle with a dab of butter or cooking spray. Pour in your mix and let cook until bubbles appear on the top. Flip it over and let it cook for another minute or two. Serve piping hot!

Serving Size: Four 7-8″ pancakes

Note: I use sweetened, home made cinnamon applesauce but then again I am an over-achiever. Since I use Red Hot candies in my applesauce my pancakes come out pink – what’s not to like about that?

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Coconut Macaroons were my dad’s favorite cookie so, needless to say, more often than not we had them in the cookie jar. Now when you think of a macaroon, you probably are imagining the kind you get at the store. You know – the slightly mushy balls of coconut  with a browned exterior like those in the picture. They’re okay in a pinch but why not make your own and experience a bite of sheer heaven?

And it only takes five ingredients.

These cookies are so delicious you’ll swear they are candy. The edges are crisp and and the center is moist and packed full of coconut and vanilla yumminess. Since the last batch didn’t last long enough for me to grab my camera, I’ll make so more and this time I will take a picture. :)

NOTE: The recipe uses fresh coconut but you can use the sweetened, shredded kind you can find in the baking section of your grocery store. If you do use the sweetened variety, you’ll want to cut back on the sugar in the recipe.

Coconut Macaroons

Ingredients

1/2 cup of egg whites (3 or 4)

1 1/2 cups sugar

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla

2 1/2 cups of shredded coconut

Directions

Preheat oven to 325

1. Beat egg whites until fluffy (approximately 30 seconds)

2. Stir in the sugar, salt and vanilla until smooth. Do not over-beat.

3. Fold in coconut by hand.

4. Cover your un-greased baking sheet with parchment paper.

5. Drop rounded teaspoonfuls approximately 2 inches apart on the parchment paper. (These will spread as they bake so make sure to leave room or they won’t crisp)

6. Bake 15 – 18 minutes until crisp and toasty.

NOTE: When you take these out of the oven, let them cool for a few minutes before removing them from the parchment paper. Don’t wait too long or they will stick and tear apart and that’s a crime IMO. :)

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Beef Stroganoff is one my favorite dishes when I want something a little special. So after much trial and error, I’ve come up with a lighter version that doesn’t sacrifice the rich flavor of the wine and sour cream. 

Beef Stroganoff

1 lb steak, trimmed (You can use sirloin or chuck etc)

3 cups of mushrooms (Crimini or portabello)

1 tbl butter

2 tbl flour

1 cup low sodium beef broth

1/4 cup dry red wine

1 cup reduced fat sour cream

1 med onion, chopped

salt & pepper

cooking spray

4 cups of cooked egg noodles

Directions

1. Cut beef into slim strips (1/4 inch wide and 1-1 1/2 inch long)

2. Heat large skillet and spray with cooking spray. Add beef and saute until lightly browned. Remove from pan and place in covered bowl to keep warm. Add mushrooms and onion and saute until onions are translucent. Add to the beef and re-cover.

3. Melt butter in skillet and add flour. Cook for one minute (very important – this will cook the flour which improves the flavor) stirring constantly. Slowly add broth and cook until thick and bubbling – keep stirring!

4. Add beef mixture, wine, salt and pepper to pan and bring to a ‘boil’. Cook for 5 minutes on low heat. Turn off the burner and let stand for a few minutes (allows gravy to thicken). Stir in sour cream.

5. Serve over cooked noodles and enjoy.

Makes 6 servings and approximately 380 calories per serving.

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