Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Caramel Popcorn

This is one of my husband's favorite treats!  In fact he's the one that makes it!  I love this caramel popcorn because it is soft and gooey!  Although if you let it sit it hardens up a little.  I got the recipe from my neighbor Allison.  She likes to use 3 bags of microwave popcorn, instead of the kind you pop yourself.  Both work great.

2 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 cup corn syrup
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1 cube butter

Pop 1 cup dry popcorn and place in a large bowl or pan.  In a saucepan, bring sugar and corn syrup to a boil.  Add sweetened condensed milk and butter.  Boil for 1 minute.  Pour over popcorn.  Stir and serve.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Black Bean Corn Salsa

This is a fresh tasting dip served with tortilla chips!  It's a standby appetizer for parties, football games, and get-together's in our home!

1 15 oz can Black Beans, rinsed and drained
1 11 oz can White Shoepeg corn, drained
2 - 3 diced Roma tomatoes
Cilantro, chopped  (about 1/4 bunch or to taste)
1 - 2 Avocados, cubed
Juice from 1 Lime
1/2 cup Italian dressing

Mix and serve with tortilla chips

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Tomato-Basil Parmesan Soup

This soup recipe is one of Karen Peterson's recipes from  I adapted it to make it gluten free.  It is delicious!  I served it to my sisters and mother at a quilting get-together and it was a hit! If you want to make it a little less fattening you can use whole milk instead of half and half.

2 (14 oz) cans diced tomatoes, with juice
1 cup finely diced celery
1 cup finely diced carrots
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup finely diced onions
1/2 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
1 tablespoon dried basil or 1/4 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup featherlight flour
1/8 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 cup Parmesan cheese
2 cups half and half, warmed
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

In a large slow cooker, combine tomatoes, celery, carrots, chicken broth, onions, and bay leaf.  (If you're using fresh basil and oregano, add them now also.)  Cover and cook on low for 5 to 7 hours, until flavors are blended and vegetables are soft.

About an hour before serving prepare a roux:  Melt butter over low heat in a skillet and add feather flour and xanthan gum; stir constantly with a whisk for 1 - 2 minutes.  Slowly stir in 2 cups hot soup from the slow cooker.  Stir until smooth.

Add it all back into the slow cooker.  Stir and add Parmesan cheese, warmed half and half, salt, and pepper.  Cover and cook on low for another hour until ready to serve.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Dutch Oven Peach Cobbler

This is one of our favorite dutch oven desserts!  It is by far the best peach cobbler recipe that I have ever had.  The original recipe comes from a scouting magazine article and was created by H. Kent Rappleye, the International Dutch Oven Society president.  I just changed the flour to use gluten free flour, and added xanthan gum and it works great!

2 cans (32oz) peaches
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup tapioca
2 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp vanilla

1 1/2 cups featherlight flour
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 pkg (3 oz) peach jello
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup cold butter
1/2 cup honey
2 eggs, beaten

1/4 cup featherlight flour
3/4 cup peach syrup
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup butter
1 tsp lemon zest
1/4 cup lemon juice

1. Drain the peaches, setting the juice aside for later use. Mix together the peaches, brown sugar, tapioca, cinnamon, lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla in the dutch oven.

2. Topping: Mix together the flour, xanthan gum, Jello, lemon zest, baking powder and salt together in a mixing bowl. Cut in the butter until mixture becomes coarse. Add in the honey and eggs and stir into mixture. The mixture will be very coarse and thick.

3. Drop the topping by spoonfuls onto the peaches. It will look like dumplings. Cook for 45-50 minutes. Remove the dutch oven from the heat and allow cobbler to cool while making the sauce.

4. In a small Dutch oven, mix the flour and peach syrup until smooth; making sure there are no lumps. Add in the brown sugar, salt, butter, and zest. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring often until the sauce thickens. remove the mixture from the heat and stir in the lemon juice. Pour the sauce over the cobbler in the Dutch oven and serve with vanilla ice cream if desired.

•  I like to use the dutch oven liners shown in the picture below!  They make cleaning up so much easier!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Zucchini Rings

My husband loves Zucchini Rings!  He likes them dipped in ketchup!  You can also use this batter to make Onion Rings!

1 beaten egg
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons oil
3/4 cup featherlight flour
1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon salt
Zucchini, sliced (about 1/4 inch)

Beat egg.  Add milk and oil.  Stir together.  Add flour, xanthan gum and salt.  Whisk.  You want it to be the consistency of pancake batter.  If it's a little too thick, add some more milk.

Heat about 2 inches of oil in a deep frying pan, on medium to medium high heat.  Coat slices of zucchini in batter one at a time, and place in hot oil.  Fry until golden brown, turning once.  When you pull them out of the oil, place on a plate with several layers of paper towel, to absorb the some of oil and cool.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Pear & Goat Cheese Salad

I like the way the ingredients in this salad combine to make a tasty flavor!  The goat cheese moistens up the salad, so you don't have to put salad dressing on this, but you certainly can if you'd like.

Green leaf lettuce
Goat cheese
Pears, peeled and cubed
Dried blueberries
Pecans, chopped

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Cheese Sauce

A favorite meal at our house is a Baked Potato Bar.  One thing we like to put on them is cooked broccoli with cheese sauce!

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons featherlight flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded

Melt butter in a saucepan.  Add salt and flour and whisk for 1 minute, until flour is heated through.  Stir in milk.  Cook on medium, stirring constantly until sauce thickens.  Add cheese and stir until melted.  Take off heat.