Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Cranberry-Banana Bread

Here's yet another nice little twist on your regular banana bread.  Enjoy!
Ingredients:
-1/3 cup shortening
-2/3 cup sugar
-2 large eggs
-2 medium very ripe bananas, mashed
-2 tsp cinnamon
-1 1/2 tsp baking powder
-1/2 tsp baking soda
-1/2 tsp salt
-1 1/2 cups flour
-1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (both work just fine)
-1/2 cup dried cranberries
Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Coat 9x5 loaf pan with baking cooking spray.  Set aside.
In your mixer's bowl, cream the shortening and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs and beat well.  Stir in the bananas.  Add the cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Mix well.  Add the flour, 1/2 cup at a time.  Stir in the walnuts and cranberries.  Mix well and pour in prepared pan.
Bake in preheated oven for 50-55 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean.
Remove from oven and cool in pan for 10 minutes.  Transfer to wire rack and cool completely.  Enjoy!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Spicy Creamy Sweet Potato Soup

What a delight this soup is!  I could eat this all day, seriously!  Enjoy!
Ingredients:
-3 lbs sweet potatoes
-1/2 cup water
-2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
-1 medium onion, finely chopped
-1/2 tsp ground cumin
-1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
-4 cups chicken broth
-1/4 tsp salt
-bacon, cooked and crumbled, for topping
-shredded Parmesan cheese, for topping
Directions:
Poke potatoes and place with water in large microwavable dish.  Cover and microwave on high for 15 minutes.  Flip on the other side, cover and microwave for 15 more minutes.  Remove carefully and let cool slightly.  Scoop the flesh out into a large bowl.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in large saucepan.  Add the onion and cook for about 3 minutes or until it becomes translucent.  Add the cumin and red pepper.  Mix well and cook for 1 minute.  Add the broth and sweet potatoes.  Bring mixture to a boil.
Using an immersion blender or working in batches with a regular blender, process until nice and smooth.
Season with salt and give it a good stir.
Ladle into bowls and top with bacon crumbs and cheese.  Enjoy!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Chocolate Chip Cookies and Ice Cream Cupcakes

I know that the weather is changing and getting colder, but this treat is welcomed year round in my house!  You get a cookie and ice cream, topped with whipped cream.  SO, so, so good!  Simple and delicious!  Enjoy!
Ingredients:
-favorite chocolate chip cookie dough-homemade or store-bought (both work just fine)
-favorite ice cream flavor (I used sea salt caramel and mint chocolate chip)
-whipped cream
Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Get you ice cream out of the freezer and let it sit on the counter.
In your muffin pan, press 1 scoop of cookie dough into each cup.  Bake in preheated oven for 10-11 minutes or until slightly browned.  Remove from oven and let cool completely.
Scoop some of the softened ice cream on top of the cooled cookies (still in the pan).  Place immediately in the freezer.  Freeze for about 2 hours or until ready to serve.
Scoop cupcakes out of the pan, top with some whipped cream and enjoy!  Delicious!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Alabama White BBQ Sauce

I was browsing through some food blogs the other day and came across this recipe on this blog. My mouth started watering immediately!  It promised to be spicy and, if you know me, that's a big weakness of mine. :)  I immediately fit it into my meal calendar, of course!  Following the original recipe, the sauce itself was nice, but it tasted more like a really delicious ranch.  So I went to work and tweaked it to my liking.  This version sure has the kick I was looking for and it is simply delicious!  You can serve it with some delicious fried chicken, pork, steak, salads, etc.  It's quite versatile.  Enjoy!
Ingredients:
-1 cup mayonnaise
-2 Tbs spicy brown mustard
-2 Tbs horseradish sauce
-1 clove garlic, peeled
-1 tsp ground black pepper
-1/4 cup white vinegar
-1/4 tsp salt
-1 tsp cayenne 
Directions:
Place all ingredients in blender.  Process until nice and smooth.  Pour into container, cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.  Enjoy!
Recipe inspired from here

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Slow Cooker Santa Fe Chili

Simply delicious!  It also has the right kick for me. :)  I know you'll enjoy this yummy chili. This recipe makes a lot of chili.  If you can't eat all of it, simply portion it and freeze it.  I sometimes, portion mine into large ziplock bags and freeze it for up to 6 months.  It keeps very well, it thaws out nicely and the great flavors are still there.  Enjoy!
Ingredients:
-2 lbs extra lean or lean ground beef
-1 medium onion, finely chopped
-2 (15 oz each) cans dark kidney beans, rinsed and drained
-2 (15 oz each) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
-2 (15 oz each) cans pinto beans, rinsed and drained
-1 (29 oz) can corn, drained
-1 (14.5 oz) can petite diced tomatoes, undrained
-1 (10 oz) can diced tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
-1 1/2 cups original V8 juice
-2 (1 oz each) envelopes ranch salad dressing mix
-2 (1.25 oz each) envelopes taco seasoning
-toppings such as shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, corn chips, etc
Directions:
In a large skillet, cook the ground beef and onion until meat is no longer pink.  Transfer mixture and all juices into your large slow cooker. 
Add remaining ingredients, except for toppings.  Give it a good stir.  Cover and cook on low for 5 hours.
Ladle into bowls, tops with preferred toppings, if desired, and enjoy!

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