Monthly Archives: November 2013

Mexican Lasagna

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Mexican Lasagna

Every Wednesday my friends and I get together to cook dinner and watch American Horror Story (I just started watching this season, if you haven’t seen it you’re missing out!).  This week we decided to make Mexican Lasagna and I’m super glad we did because it was fantastically delicious!  Now, you may be asking, “what exactly is Mexican Lasagna, that sounds strange”.  Well, let me tell you, you take the concept of lasagna, ya know, layered pasta, sauce, and cheese, and give it a twist with Mexican ingredients and flavors.  You end up with a spicy, cheesy, vegetable, beef filling with salsa and corn tortillas that will blow your mind!

mexican lasanga

First start by cooking some onion, garlic, and ground beef.  Then drain the grease, add a can of crushed tomatoes, belle peppers, and taco seasoning (I don’t have a picture of the first two steps because I was starving and forgot… oops).  After that cooks for a minutes stir in some corn and black beans.

beef/veggie mix for Mexican lasagna

Meanwhile, spread a thin layer of corn meal into the bottom of a baking dish.

corn meal layer

Put some corn tortillas on top.

corn tortilla layer

Scoop half of the beef/veggie mix on top.

beef and veggie layer

Add half of the salsa and shredded cheese.

salsa and cheese layer

And another layer of tortillas.

Second layer

Followed by more beef/veggies, salsa, and cheese.

Mexican lasagna pre-oven

Pop it in the oven until the cheese is melted and bubbly and amazing.

Pan of Mexican Lasagna

Let it sit for a few minutes (warning: this is a feat requiring enormous amounts of self control), then slice it and serve with sour cream as desired.

Mexican Lasagna

 

Recipe

Mexican Lasagna

Makes 1 – 13 x 9″ baking dish (serves ~12)

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1/2 medium sweet onion – chopped

2 lbs ground beef

2 cloves garlic – minced

2 bell peppers – chopped

2 packets taco seasoning (or mix of cumin, chile powder, paprika)

15 oz can diced tomatos with green chiles

15 oz can black beans

8 oz frozen corn

1/4 cup corn meal

12 corn tortillas

4 cups shredded Mexican cheese

16 oz salsa

sour cream – optional for serving

– Preheat oven to 350°

– Cook the onion in a pan with oil for 5 minutes or until translucent

– Add the ground beef and garlic and cook until the beef is no longer pink, then drain the grease and return to the heat

– Add the pepper, canned tomatoes, and taco seasoning to the pan, and stir

– Stir in the black beans and corn

– Meanwhile sprinkle the corn meal into the bottom of a 9 x 13″ pan

Space out 6 tortillas on top of the corn meal

Layer the beef/veggie mix, salsa, and cheese

Repeat the layers of tortilla, beef/veggie mix, salsa, and cheese

Place in the oven for 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted

– Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes

Cut and serve with sour cream as desired

 

 

Salted Caramel Pretzel Brownies

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Salted Caramel Pretzel Brownies

Brownies are some of my favorite desserts in the entire world, I mean, delicious, fudge-y, chocolate goodness, what’s not to love?  One of my favorite variations of brownies is adding caramel sauce and I decided this time around to really jazz things up by adding salted caramel pretzels and caramel sauce. The combination of the salty pretzels, sweet caramel, and rich chocolate is oh so good, you should definitely make these brownies next time you’re looking for a sweet and salty treat!

scpbrownies

A few months ago I started a subscription to Nature Box, which is a company that sends snacks to your door every month, it’s a pretty great deal and they have lots of delicious snacks!  I got these salted caramel pretzel pops and I knew they would make a delicious addition to brownies!

salted caramel pretzel pops

Now, let’s get baking!  First beat some eggs until they’re nice and fluffy.

beat eggs

Then melt some butter and stir in brown sugar, granulated sugar, and vanilla.

butter and sugars

Add some cocoa powder, it’s delicious already!

cocoa powder

Stir together your dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, and salt) and add them to the butter mixture.

add dry ingredients

Finally, stir in the eggs

add eggs

Pour the batter into a greased, foil lined baking dish.

batter into pan

Swirl some caramel over the top.

carmel

Swirl the caramel around.

swirl caramel

Sprinkle with the crushed pretzel pieces.

crushed pretzel pieces

Bake until delicious.

baked brownies

Cut the brownies, top with more caramel, and serve.

salted caramel pretzel brownies

 

Recipe

Salted Caramel Pretzel Brownies

Makes 1 – 8″ square baking dish

Ingredients:

3 eggs

3/4 cup melted butter

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup cocoa powder

1/2 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

caramel sauce

2.5 oz Nature Box Salted Caramel Pretzel Pops – crushed

– Preheat oven to 350°

– Beat the eggs until fluffy

– Melt the butter and stir in the sugar and vanilla

– Stir in the cocoa powder

– Mix together the dry ingredients and add to the butter mix

– Stir in the eggs

Line an 8″ square baking dish with foil or parchment paper and grease

Pour the batter into the pan

Pour caramel sauce over top

Sprinkle with crushed pretzel pieces

– Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until done

Cut and serve with extra caramel sauce

BBQ Chicken Pizza with Sauteed Peppers and Onions

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Who doesn’t love pizza?  No one, right (at least no sane person…)?  I love making pizzas at home so I can put on whatever toppings I like.  Plus it is super quick and simple to make pizza at home! This past week my friends and I got to together to study for an exam and decided to make BBQ Chicken Pizza for dinner (because no study party is complete without food).  I buy refrigerator pizza crust (the Pillsbury kind from the pull apart can) and then top with sauce, cheese, and toppings as suits my mood, for the BBQ chicken pizza we went with BBQ sauce, Mexican shredded cheese, sauteed peppers and onions, and shredded chicken, yummm!

BBQchickenpizza

First spread the dough onto a greased baking sheet and top with some olive oil and garlic powder and then toss it in the oven.

pizza dough

Saute some red onions and bell peppers until they’re softened.

sauteed peppers and onions

After a few minutes take out the baked dough and cover it with some BBQ sauce and shredded cheese.

bbq sauce and cheese

Add some chicken.

chicken on pizza

And top with the onions and peppers.

peppers and onions on pizza

Put it back in the oven until the cheese is melty and delicious.

BBQ chicken pizza with sauteed peppers and onions

Serve it up and enjoy!

BBQchickenpizza

Recipe

BBQ Chicken Pizza

Serves 6

Ingredients:

pizza dough (I used Pillsbury Artisan Pizza Crust, in the refrigerator aisle)

extra virgin olive oil

garlic powder

1 small red onion – sliced

2 bell peppers – sliced

1 cup BBQ sauce

2 cups shredded Mexican cheese

1 chicken breast – shredded

– Roll the dough out onto a greased baking sheet,  cover with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic powder and bake according to packaged instructions

– Saute the peppers and onion in a tablespoon of olive oil

– After the crust is done spread with the BBQ sauce and top with shredded cheese

– Add the chicken to the pizza and place the peppers and onions on top

– Return to the oven according to package directions and cook until the cheese is melted

– Cut and serve

Pumpkin Cinnamon Chip Cookies

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Pumpkin Cinnamon Chip Cookies

I know that fall is the time for pumpkin everything, and over the past few weeks my Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookie (my favorite!) recipe has been very popular, so I decided to share with you a variation I made for a tailgate (Go Terps!) in mid-October, Pumpkin Cinnamon Chip Cookies. They have a delicious pumpkin flavor which is complimented by a classic pairing of cinnamon.  The Pumpkin Cinnamon Chip Cookies I made have two variations from the original recipe, one, as you can tell from the name, they have cinnamon chips instead of chocolate chips (I know it seems counter intuitive that I’m replacing chocolate with cinnamon because “chocolate makes everything better” is essentially my life motto, but these cookies were still delicious, which I think attests to the pure awesomeness of the cookie themselves) and they have no butter, I used extra pumpkin instead (I could lie to you and say that this substitution was to make them healthier but we’re all friends here and the truth is that after going to the grocery store I came home and realized we were out of butter and I was too lazy to go back and buy some.  Regardless, the cookies still tasted delicious, the texture was just less cake-y).

pumpkin cinnamon chip cookies

Start by mixing together the pumpkin, sugar, egg, and vanilla.

pccc wet

In a separate bowl mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.

pccc dry

Mix the dry and wet ingredients together and then stir in the cinnamon chips.

cc in dough

You should be able to find cinnamon chips in the baking aisle next to the chocolate chips (feel free to buy chocolate chips too because let’s be honest, you can never have too much chocolate in your life, and if you’re like me you’ll go home and decide you should make a batch of cinnamon chip cookies and a batch of chocolate chip cookies because you don’t want chocolate to get jealous…)

cinnamon chips

Spoon the dough onto greased cookie dough sheets and pop them in the oven.

dough on cookie sheet

Take them out and smell the delicious aroma of pumpkin and cinnamon.

pumpkin cinnamon chip cookies

Enjoy a cookie (or 6, these things are seriously addicting) and share with your friends!

pumpkin cinnamon chip cookie

 

Recipe

Pumpkin Cinnamon Chip Cookies

Yields 3 dozen cookies

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 egg

1 1/2 cups canned (or fresh cooked) pumpkin

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup cinnamon chips

1 cup nuts (or an additional 1 cup of cinnamon chips)

– Preheat oven to 350°

– Cream together the pumpkin and sugar, then beat in egg and vanilla

– Stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt

– Alternate adding dry ingredients and pumpkin to the butter/sugar mixture

– Then stir in the cinnamon chips and nuts

– Drop by spoonful onto greased cookie sheets

– Bake at 350° for 10-12 mintues

October 2013: A Review

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Apparently it’s November… when the heck did that happen?!?  I swear time has been speeding up, does that mean I’m getting old???  Annyyywayyy, regardless of how fast I think the time has been going, the end of October brings my compilation of the tastiest recipes I’ve found this month!

 

My Top 3 Most Viewed Posts:

  1. Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies – Tis the season for pumpkin and these cookies will definitely hit the spot!pumpkin chocolate chip cookies
  2. Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies – The banana version of the pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, soft and delicious!  bcc cookie and milk
  3. Dutch Oven Peach Cobbler – Peach season may be over but the demand for this delicious tangy, sweet, juicy cobbler apparently isn’t going anywhere.

My Top 10 Favorite Links:

  1. Starting things out with a delicious pumpkin treat, if I woke up to these Pumpkin Pecan Cinnamon Rolls (from Bakerella) I would be soooo happy!

    Cinnamon Rolls

    From Bakerella

  2. Another delicious fall treat, this Apple Cake with Thick Caramel Icing (from Chaos and Cookies) looks delectable!

    SONY DSC

    From Chaos and Cookies

  3. These Slow Cooker Chicken Chile Verde Nachos (from Two Peas and Their Pod) need to happen in my life right now.

    Chicken Chile Verde Nachos Recipe on twopeasandtheirpod.com Perfect for game day!

    From Two Peas and Their Pod

  4. Kiwi, Apple and Cinnamon Jam (from Papaya Pieces) sounds like a tasty, unique treat.

    Kiwi, apple and cinnamon jam

    From Papaya Pieces

  5. Need a dinner recipe?  May I suggest this Sicilian Caponata (from Chilli Marmalade).

    Sicilian caponata recipe

    From Chilli Marmalade

  6. Chocolate chocolate chip cookies (from Eat My Shortbread), need i say more?

    20131027-165603.jpg

    From Eat My Shortbread

  7. This Cuban Pot Roast (From I Breath I’m Hungry) will most definitely be making an appearance on my plate soon!

    low carb ropa vieja recipe from ibreatheimhungry.com

    From I Breath I’m Hungry

  8. These Sweet Potato Chocolate Chip Pancakes (from Running to the Kitchen) sound like a creative and yummy breakfast!

    Sweet potato oat chocolate chip pancakes | runningtothekitchen.com

    From Running to the Kitchen

  9. Speaking of sweet potatoes, these Thai Sweet Potato Veggie Burgers (from Oh She Glows) look AMAZING!

    thaiveggieburger 2353   Thai Sweet Potato Veggie Burgers with Spicy Peanut Sauce

    From Oh She Glows

  10. Last but most certainly not least have breakfast in cookie form with these Maple and Blueberry White Chocolate Chip Pancake Cookies (from Picky Palate).

    Maple and Blueberry Pancake White Chocolate Chip Cookies

    From Picky Palate

 

And a bonus link because Halloween has come and gone and you need to think of exciting new things to do with all that leftover candy.  I saw this 7 Layer Candy Dip from Serious Eats on Buzzfeed and I thought it was a pretty genius idea!

 

Yummmmmmm!  What were your favorite links from this month?