Monday, November 30, 2009

Goody Box/Bag Recipes

If you have come to find the recipes for the items in the goody bags/boxes, they are linked to the names below.

The caramel recipe is a closely guarded family recipe, and since my aunt was gracious enough to share it with me, I have consented to not share it.

Friday, November 27, 2009


The people who have been given bags of this keep coming back for more, so I guess it must be pretty tasty!

In large bowl:
12 cups rolled oats
2 cups chopped dates
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup raisins
1 cup dried papaya
1 cup sesame seeds
2 cups walnuts, coarsely chopped
1 cup coconut flakes
1 cup raw pumpkin seeds

In medium bowl:
1 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup agave nectar
1/2 cup molasses
1 cup filtered water
1 cup applesauce
1-1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3 heaping tablespoons cinnamon
1 tablespoon vanilla

Whisk everything in the second bowl together well

Pour liquid into oat bowl, mix thoroughly, (I used my hands and had it mixed in no time). Divide evenly onto four stoneware bar pans (jelly-roll) and bake 45 minutes at 300 degrees in a convection oven, stirring every 15 minutes. For more crunch, bake a little longer. Cool thoroughly before storing in glass containers. Makes 27 cups of granola.

(eta: I have found that if I add some of the wet ingredients to the fruit and add it to the oat mixture during the last twenty minutes of baking, the fruit doesn't get so leathery.)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Ideas for Smoked Turkey Leftovers

Not big turkey fans at Miller Manor, but for some reason I thought I really needed a smoked bird this Thanksgiving. Because I was too late to get one for the family gathering and someone else did that, I ended up with the whole 12 lbs. to use for the two of us. We don't eat pork anymore, so I figured I could substitute the smoked turkey for ham in some of my old recipes. Here are some of the ideas I came up with:

  • Split pea soup (I have yellow split peas, but green would also work)
  • Black eyed peas (Great for New Years!)
  • Quiche Lorraine (I use a gluten-free crust, either store bought or one made from almond flour)
  • Turkey Salad

Sweet Potato (natural sweeteners)

The old family favorite (here) needed to be healthier to align with our commitment to eating better, although I am not certain this is a huge improvement with all the butter... We went with fresh instead of canned sweet potatoes, (big health savings) and did away with the brown sugar and marshmallows (another giant improvement), replacing it with a little stevia and agave nectar. I increased the spices to give it more zip and hopefully disguise the fact they aren't as sweet. It is a holiday food, though and no one seems to mind venturing out from the healthy fare a few times a year. Here is the new version:

  • Three large whole sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/4-1/2 inch thick. (consistency is the important thing, as they will need to cook evenly)
  • 3 apples (wash and core, do not peel) sliced 1/4" thick
  • 1 T cinnamon
  • 1/4 t.allspice
  • 1/8 t. cloves
  • 1/4-1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • agave nectar or maple syrup (to taste)
Melt about 2 T butter in the bottom of a large casserole dish. Mix together nuts and spices (I added 1/4 tsp. stevia powder as well, since the family is used to these being really sweet).

In the bottom of the buttered casserole dish, layer slices of sweet potatoes, apples, nut mixture, agave nectar (drizzle over) and slices of butter. Make several layers of this, finishing with the butter. Cover and bake at 350 degrees about an hour, until sweet potatoes are tender. This will make about 12 servings.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Stuffed Chicken Breasts

4 (5-6 oz.) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
2 slices uncured turkey bacon
8 basil leaves
4 T. shredded fotina, dill havarti or garlic cheddar cheese
2 tsp. olive oil

Butterfly breasts and pound to 1/4" thickness
Layer 1/2 slice of bacon, 2 basil leaves and 1 T cheese over 1/2 of each breast, leaving 1/2" border. Fold over other 1/2 to cover filling and press to seal.
Heat oil in large non-stick skillet over medium heat, then add chicken. Cook till golden brown and cooked through--4-5 minutes on each side.
Serve with steamed baby spinach leaves and fresh fruit salad Makes 4 servings

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Chocolate Caramel Cookies

Chocolate Caramel Cookies
Makes about 5 dozen

1 cup butter, softened (no substitutes)
1 cup plus 1 tsp. sugar, divided
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup baking cocoa
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup chopped pecans, divided
1 13 oz. package Rolo candies

In mixing bowl, cream butter, 1 cup of sugar and brown sugar. Add eggs and vanilla; mix well. In separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa, and baking soda. Add dry ingredients to mixture and beat just until combined. Stir in 1/2 cup of pecans. Unwrap Rolo candies. Shape dough by tablespoonfuls around each candy. In a small bowl, combine remaining pecans and sugar. dip each cookie 1/2 way into mixture. Place cookies, nut side up, on un-greased cookie sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 7 to 10 minutes, or until top is slightly cracked. Cool for 3 minutes on sheet, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Chocolate Raspberry Sauce

1 cup heavy cream
5 T raspberry jam
4-1/2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
1 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped fine
1-2 T cassis or to taste

In a heavy saucepan bring the cream to a simmer with the jam, whisking. Remove pan from the heat; add the choclates and a pinch of salt. Let the mixture stand for 3 minutes, whisk it until it is smooth, and whisk in the cassis. Strain the sauce through a fine sieve set over a bowl, and serve it warm over ice cream. This sauce hardens into a chewy candy when poured over ice cream. Yield: About 1-1/2 cups.

(We used this over cheesecake, it was delicious!!)

Mimi's Sugar Cookies

1-1/4 c. soft butter
2 c. sugar
2 eggs
1/2 c. milk
5 c. flour
1 tsp. salt
4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp nutmeg

Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and beat until fluffy. Stir together dry ingredients and add alternately with milk to creamed mixture. Chill 2 to 12 hours. Roll 1/4 inch thick on floured board. Bake 375 degrees for 8 minutes. Cool completely, then glaze with:

2 c. powdered sugar
4 T milk
1 tsp coconut oil
almond extract to taste
Combine sugar and milk. Stir until smooth. Add oil and flavor; stir till blended.

English Toffee

2 cups brown sugar
2 cups butter
2 tsp. vanilla
6 T water

Put all ingredients in a heavy 3 qt. saucepan; bring to a boil, stir constatly until a test sample becomes very hard in cold water. Pour on 2 buttered cookie sheets, spread as thin as possible. Lay 6 lg. milk chocolate Hershey bars on top and spread on top of each tray. Sprinkle finely chopped walnuts or almonds over top. Let sit until chocolate is completely hard. Break into pieces. Store closely covered with waxed paper between layers.

Peanut Butter Creme Fudge

1/2 cup butter
1 lg. can evaporated milk
4 c. sugar
7 oz. jar marshmallow creme
12 oz. jar peanut butter (1-1/4 c.)
Combine butter, milk and sugar in a heavy saucepan. Bring to soft ball stage; stirring frequently. When soft ball stage is reached, remove from heat and add marshmallow creme and peanut butter. Cool; stir occasionally as it cools, then beat until creamy and thick. Pour into buttered 13x9x2 pan Let set until cold and firm.

Chocolate Cappuccino Cookies

2 c. butter, softened
4 c. brown sugar, packed
4 eggs
5-1/2 c. flour
1 c. cocoa powder
1/4 c. instant coffee granules
1 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1 t. salt
10-oz. pkg. cinnamon chips

Beat butter until creamy. Gradually add brown sugar, beating well. Add eggs, beating until blended. Combine flour and next 5 ingredients. Gradually add to butter mixture, beating at low speed just until blended. Stir in cinnamon chips. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls, 2 inches apart onto lightly greased baking sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes. Cool on baking sheets 5 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. Makes 8 dozen