Chicken Chimichangas


I love Mexican food.  Really, really love it.  I don’t understand people when I hear them say, “Oh, I don’t really want Mexican food, I just had it last week.”  Last week?  I’d be in some serious withdrawal if I had to wait that long.

As it stands now, I already keep a running supply of salsa in my refrigerator.  One of my guiltiest pleasures is hiding in the panty, shoving my face full of tortilla chips and salsa, scrambling to hide the evidence when I hear my husband’s car pull into the garage.

I attribute this to my mother’s food cravings when she was pregnant with me.  The story is that she and my dad ate once a week at a local Mexican restaurant during those nine months.  And let me tell you a little something about this place: back then, I’m not certain just how by the book they were about following restaurant code, but most patrons didn’t care because it was so crazy good.

And authentic.

And spicy.

Believe me when I say I can out-eat just about anyone in a spicy foods contest.

I was on a blind date once with a guy who tried to “impress me” by attempting to eat the special back of the kitchen hot sauce I’d requested, and ended up leaving the table in a fit of coughing, red-faced embarassment. 

Clearly not the guy for me.

All that aside, this recipe is not spicy, though you certainly could turn it up a notch if you chose to do so.  Whatever you do, make it, because it is good.

Start by shredding about 2 cups of cooked chicken, or more, depending on how many you are serving.  Deli chicken would be perfect for this, although I happened to have some leftover grilled taco chicken, and that’s what I used.

I also had some leftover southwest cream sauce leftover from the shrimp tacos I’d made a few days before, so I mixed it all together…

…then rolled the mixture into wheat tortilla shells secured with a toothpick to keep them closed.

To get the crispy, fried effect without sabotaging your diet, spray the tortillas with canola oil and sprinkle with Kosher salt.  Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes, turning once halfway through.

Serve with green salsa, black beans and shredded monterey jack cheese.  YUM.

 

Recipe: Chicken Chimichangas

Ingredients

  • 2 cups shredded, cooked chicken
  • 1 (16-oz.) container sour cream
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Instructions

  1. Whisk together sour cream; garlic, red onion; chili powder; cumin; ground red pepper; and salt.
  2. Whisk in cilantro and lime juice until smooth.
  3. Add chicken to combine.
  4. Fill tortillas with chicken mixture; roll up and secure with a toothpick.
  5. Spray with canola oil and sprinkle with Kosher salt.
  6. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes, turning over halfway through.

 

Chocolate Sprinkle Cookies

So, you know what’s not a good idea when cooking with toddlers?  Turning your back for even one second.

Because if you do, you’ll turn around and find cookies that look like this:

And this:

Also not a good idea?

Loosening the lid on your brand-new, $5.00 bottle of rainbow jimmies and pushing them to the back of the counter, thinking they are “out of reach.”

The next step of decorating these “quick and easy” cookies involved using the vacuum cleaner attachment for 15 minutes to suck sprinkles out from between the refrigerator and the cabinets and from underneath the end tables in the living room.

See the design on my site header that shows a cracked egg and a spilled pot of spaghetti?  It’s real life here, people.  This is how I roll.

At this point, I was seriously considering scrapping the entire homemade cookie idea.  It was late, I was tired, and I barely had enough sprinkles left to finish the project.  But the next day was my son’s last day of Mom’s Day Out; his last time trotting off to what is basically a play group before starting preschool a few weeks later.  The room for “big kids,” we call it.

But my son isn’t a big kid, not really.  He just turned four.  He’s my baby, whether he wants to be or not.  And babies need cookies to take playgroup to share with their friends.

Especially when they said the evening before, “Mama, I want to give you a hundred kissies because I love you a million times up to the moon.”  If that doesn’t deserve homemade cookies, I don’t know what would.

Also, I’d just purchased this cookbook and was dying to try it out.  A more apt title might be, “1 Dough, 100 Pounds.”  I’m thinking of giving it a try.

 

 And about those broken cookie pieces?  Don’t worry, I um, got rid of them.

 

Recipe: Chocolate Sprinkle Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • scant 3/4 cup superfine sugar
  • 1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 7 oz white chocolate, broken into pieces
  • Candy sprinkles

Instructions

  1. Put the butter and sugar into a bowl and mis well with a wooden spoon, the beat in the egg yolk and vanilla extract.
  2. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder and a pinch of salt. Add to sugar mixture and stir until combined.
  3. Chill dough for 30 minutes to a hour. Roll out and cut into shapes.
  4. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes at 375.
  5. To frost, melt white chocolate in a double boiler. Spread over cookies and add sprinkles.

Sugar-Crusted Raspberry-Blueberry Muffins

I hadn’t planned on posting this weekend, but here’s what happened.

I woke up at 5:00 am Saturday morning and couldn’t get back to sleep

And instead of being productive, and say, starting housework or laundry, I decided to bake these:

Why?  Because I was hungry, I had all the ingredients, and I hadn’t yet had enough caffeine to talk myself into cleaning the bathrooms.  Also, I was irritated I actually had a morning to sleep in and couldn’t do it.

Baked goods make me feel better.

 

Recipe: Sugar-Crusted Raspberry-Blueberry Muffins

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup mini-chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup raspberries
  • 3/4 cup blueberries

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, combine 1 3/4 cups of the flour, 1/2 cup of the sugar, the baking powder, and salt. Add the butter and combine.
  2. In a second bowl, whisk together the milk, egg, and vanilla.
  3. Gradually add the milk mixture to the flour mixture and stir until just combined; the batter will be lumpy.
  4. Stir in chocolate chips.
  5. Toss the berries with the remaining flour in a bowl. Gently fold the berry mixture into the batter.
  6. Fill each muffin cup 3/4 full and sprinkle the batter with the remaining sugar.
  7. Bake at 400 for 15 to 17 minutes; makes 12 muffins.

 Recipe adapted from Real Simple

 

Citrus Shrimp Tacos with Southwest Cream Sauce

Stores are taunting me by starting to display pumpkins and gourds and all sorts of fall decor.  I was at Hobby Lobby the other day and they had their Christmas trees out.  Seriously, it’s only August and still a million degrees here.

It’s a cruel joke to play on someone who lives for the fall season.

So, to console myself and attempt to enjoy what is hopefully the last vestige of summer, I decided to make sangria.

And you know what goes great with sangria?  These tacos:

Don’t be fooled by my lame-o pictures.  These really are fabulous, especially drizzled with the southwest sauce.

Recipe: Citrus Shrimp Tacos

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 tablespoon fish or seafood seasoning
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/3 cup lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • soft taco-size flour tortillas
  • 1 bag shredded lettuce or cole slaw mix

 Instructions

  1. Combine seasoning and garlic in a long, shallow dish. Add lime juice, lemon juice and shrimp, turning to coat. Cover and chill 10 minutes.
  2. Drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil in pan. Remove shrimp from marinade and cook 2-3 minutes on each side or until shrimp turn pink.
  3. Serve in warm tortillas with shredded cheese, roasted corn, and Southwest Cream Sauce (recipe below).

 

Recipe: Southwest Cream Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 (16-oz.) container sour cream
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Instructions

  1. Whisk together sour cream; garlic, red onion; chili powder; cumin; ground red pepper; and salt.
  2. Whisk in cilantro and lime juice until smooth.
  3. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

 

Blueberry-Lemon Cake Donuts – and a giveaway!

 

I may have mentioned my affinity before for kitchen gadgets, especially specialized ones I really don’t have space for.  But I keep buying them anyway.  It’s like I can’t stop myself.  I’m addicted.  But there are worse things–right?

And the good news here is that I bought this Wilton cake donut pan not just for me, but for one of you, too.

I don’t want to be alone in my obsession.

Here’s how you can have up to three chances to win:

  1. Post a comment here, naming your favorite kind of donut.
  2. “Like” me on Facebook, then post a comment here letting me know you did.
  3. Share a link to my Facebook page or to this giveaway on your Facebook page, then come back here to comment that you did.

Giveaway will remain open through Friday, September 2, 2011.  Winner will be chosen by random.org and announced Monday, September 5.

These are super easy to make, and the possibilities are endless.  I took Wilton’s basic recipe and jazzed it up a bit with blueberries and lemon.

First, sift together your dry ingredients, including the zest of one lemon.  I didn’t take a picture of that, because frankly, looking at a picture of flour is BORING.

Wet ingredients:  This isn’t that much more exciting.

But…wait for it…gently fold in your blueberries.  YUM!

 Spoon carefully into your molds:

Bake at 350 for 7 to 9 minutes.  Let cool.  It’s hard to wait.

Drizzle with a glaze of powdered sugar, milk, and lemon juice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

By the way, Wilton is in no way involved with this giveaway.  Wilton has no idea who Kitchen Meets Girl is, other than someone who took a few of their cake classes a few years ago and could barely get the shell technique down.

I’m soooooooooo much better at eating cake than decorating it.

Recipe: Blueberry-Lemon Cake Donuts

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cake flour, sifted
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • zest of one lemon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melter
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries

Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, sift together cake flour, sugar, baking powder, nutmeg and salt. Add lemon zest.
  2. Add buttermilk, eggs and butter. Beat until just combined. Fill each doughnut cup approximately 2/3 cup full.
  3. Bake 7 to 9 minutes at 425.
  4. Finish donuts with glaze of powdered sugar, milk and lemon juice.

Microformatting by hRecipe.

 

Spinach, Bacon, Mushroom and Gouda Quiche

 

Um, yummmmmmmmmm.

And I don’t really even care for egg dishes.

I might make an exception for this one.  

Really, you have to try it.  Like, today.  Now.  Or tomorrow.  This weekend.  Whenever.  But soon.

Recipe: Bacon, Spinach, Mushroom and Gouda Quiche

Ingredients

  • Your favorite pie crust. I used this one.
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
  • 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled into pieces
  • 3 cups fresh spinach
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup grated smoked Gouda cheese
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • dash of grated nutmeg
  • 3 eggs

Instructions

  1. Prepare your crust and preheat oven to 350.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet. Add onions and mushrooms; saute 5 minutes or until tender.
  3. Add spinach and saute 2 minutes.
  4. Add prepared bacon.
  5. In a large bowl, combine milk and remaining ingredients. Stir in spinach mixture and pour into crust.
  6. Bake at 350 for 50 to 60 minutes.

Cooking time: 55 minute(s)

Recipe adapted from Cooking Light

Microformatting by hRecipe.

 

No-Roll Pie Crust

Years ago, I took a pie-making class with the hope of impressing the Tall Boy – who I later found out didn’t even like crust.  The class was actually a lot of fun, and I have to admit, there is nothing quite like a light and flaky, homemade pie crust.

But holy cannoli, it’s a lot of work.

And typically, if I’m making something to go inside of a pie crust, I’m already spending more time in the kitchen than I probably want to.

So when I found this recipe of a no-roll pie crust, I felt like my prayers had been answered.  Now, if I could just find a recipe for “no-roll” over the waist of my jeans, I’d be in business.

Here’s all you’ll need:

Recipe: No-Roll Pie Crust

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons sugar (plus more to taste, if you want a sweeter crust)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil

Instructions

Mix all ingredients together, using your hands.

Press into a 9″ pie plate.

Bake at 425 for 10 to 12 minutes, until light brown.

Thanks to my mom’s friend Sondra, for sharing this recipe.  Sondra is quite possibly the best pie-maker in the world, and according to my mother, can make a meringue taller than my bangs in the 80′s.

Next up–a spinach, bacon, and smoked gouda quiche to go along with this easy pie shell.  Sign up on my e-mail list, or follow me on Facebook so you don’t miss it. 

Happy Monday!

 

Caramel Apple Salad

Seriously, despite all of the high calorie, sugar laden foods I’ve been posting lately, we do try to eat healthy around our house.  But when it gets right down to it, I really enjoy making baked goods and other yummy treats to send with the Tall Boy to work and with my son to Mom’s Day Out (preschool starts in September–how did he get this big so fast?  I need wine.) so people think I’m the coolest wife and mom ever.

I don’t keep any of the cookies, cakes and cupcakes I make around my house.  You know why?  Because the Tall Boy and my son share some mutant gene that allows them to eat one stinkin’ bite of a cupcake and be done.

I, however, do not have this gene.  I have the gene that tells my brain to tell my hand to shove bite after bite of cupcake into my mouth until the entire batch is gone.

Anyway, this is a great quick and easy dessert–and you won’t feel too guilty, even if you eat the majority of it yourself.  Grab just a few ingredients:

Mix together your Cool-Whip and butterscotch pudding mix.  I used sugar-free.

Mix in a small can of crushed pineapple and three large apples, chunked.  Grapes would be good here, too.

Mix together and refrigerate until ready to serve.  I topped mine with some sugared pecans.

 What’s your favorite light summer dessert?

 

Recipe: Caramel Apple Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 small instant sugar-free butterscotch pudding
  • 1 small can crushed pineapple with juice
  • 3 to 4 large Gala or Pink Lady apples, chunked
  • 8 oz sugar-free Cool Whip
  • sugared pecans or walnuts (optional)

Instructions

  1. Mix everything together and refrigerate until ready to serve

Preparation time: 5 minute(s)

Microformatting by hRecipe.

Strawberry Milk-Cakes

 

After making cookies and cream cupcakes a few weeks ago, I decided I would try a strawberry version to send to school with the Doodlebug.  I’m finding out many things as a parent, namely that strawberry cake is the preferred confection of children across the nation.  Maybe the world, I don’t know.

Someone explain this to me.  Cheesecake, I get.  Wedding-white, yep, I’m with ya.  Lemon and chocolate?  I’m down with those, too.  But strawberry cake?  Not so much.  I mean, I’ll eat it–it is cake after all–but it would never be my first choice.

However, I’m determined to keep the moniker “best cooker in the whole world” even if it means resorting to bribery.  And anyone who says they would never bribe a child is clearly someone who doesn’t have kids.

Okay, so start by dropping a whole vanilla Oreo cookie into your cupcake liners.  Next, sift together your dry ingredients.  Eat an Oreo while you’re at it.

In your mixer bowl, cream together your butter, sugar and vanilla.

Add whole eggs and the white, one at a time, and beat until incorporated.  Add flour mixture in two batches, alternating with the milk.

 

Fold in chopped strawberries by hand.

So, I may or may not have “sampled” so much of this batter that later I practically went into a sugar-induced coma.  But this was maybe the best cake batter I have ever eaten.  I don’t make proclamations like this lightly, and I have sampled a lot of cake batter in my day. 

Make these–even if you don’t care for strawberry cake.  Even I may have been converted to a strawberry cake lover.

Fill your cupcake liners three-quarters full.  Provided you didn’t eat too much of the batter, you should have enough to make 30 – 34 cupcakes.

Bake at 350 for 25 to 30 minutes.

I used the Wilton buttercream icing recipe, adding approximately 4 crushed Oreos to the icing before piping.

 

Recipe: Strawberry Milk-Cakes

Ingredients

  • 1 package vanilla Oreos
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cake flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 large whole eggs plus 1 egg white
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups finely copped fresh strawberries

Instructions

  1. Line muffin tins with liners and drop one Oreo into each.
  2. Sift together both flour, baking power, and salt.
  3. Add whole eggs and the white, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated. Add flour mixture in two batches, alternating with the milk, and beating until well combined. Fold in chopped strawberries by hand.
  4. Fill muffin cups three-quarters full. Bake, rotating halfway through, about 25 to 30 minutes.
  5. To finish, pipe with buttercream icing (I used a Wilton 1M tip) and garnish with an additional Oreo or fresh strawberries.

Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes

 

Microformatting by hRecipe.

Chocolate Almond Coffee Cake

I did something crazy the other day.  Something I would not normally do, and would in fact, typically go to great measures to avoid.  But it had to be done.

See, I decided on Friday morning that I needed wanted to make a coffee cake for breakfast over the weekend.  Because we all know that “coffee cake” is just an acceptable way to eat dessert for breakfast.

Since I had no time other than my lunch break to grab the ingredients, I was forced to run to sounds-like-not-so-small-Mart to get them.  Shudder.  It was a madhouse.  A disaster.  An environment that had me wondering why people think it’s okay to shop in pajamas and houseshoes and cursing under my breath when the lady in front of me paid for her transaction with TWO. SEPARATE. CHECKS.

Seriously, who does that?

But desparate times called for desparate measures.  I wanted my cake.

And you know what?  It was so worth it.  After trying a bit of it, my Doodlebug declared me “the best cooker in the whole world.”  He also then called my husband the best cooker in the world, but I’m choosing to ignore that statement.

At any rate, this cake?  So good.

First, make your streusel topping.  Mix together 1/8 cup each of brown sugar and white sugar, cinnamon, chocolate chips, and cocoa roasted almonds.

Resist the urge to shovel a big spoonful of topping into your mouth.  Instead, sift together your dry ingredients.

In your mixer bowl, cream together 1 stick of butter with 1/2 cup white sugar and 1/2 cup brown sugar.  Add eggs one at a time, along with your almond extract.  Alternate adding flour mixture and sour cream to the egg mixture, stirring until just combined.

Spread half of the mixture into a springform pan and top with half of your struesel topping.  Repeat, allowing for extra chocolate chips…you know, if you’re like me and like to “sample” the product ahead of time.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes at 350.  You can also bake this in a 9×9 pan, but by using a springform pan, it comes out looking extra pretty, like this:

 Yum, and like this:

Also, if you’re feeling particularly charitable and are in the market for some of the best recipes from some of the best bloggers around, check out this link:

100% of the proceeds benefit the Red Cross.  Those of you who know me well know that I can’t pass up a good cookbook, especially for a cause like this.  Pretty awesome; check it out.

Chocolate Almond Coffee Cake (printable recipe)

Ingredients for streusel topping:

  • 1/8 cup each of granulated sugar and brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup chocolate roasted almonds, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

Ingredients for cake:

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 eggs

Preparation Instructions:

  1. Mix together 1/8 cup each of brown sugar and white sugar, cinnamon, chocolate chips, and cocoa roasted almonds.  Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together your flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  3. In your mixer bowl, cream together 1 stick of butter with 1/2 cup white sugar and 1/2 cup brown sugar.  Add eggs one at a time, along with your almond extract.  Alternate adding flour mixture and sour cream to the egg mixture, stirring until just combined.
  4. Spread half of the mixture into a springform pan and top with half of your struesel topping.  Repeat.
  5. Bake at 350 for 30 to 35 minutes.