Friday, August 31, 2012

PW's Baked French Toast

  • Butter, For Greasing
  • 1 loaf Crusty Sourdough Or French Bread
  • 8 whole Eggs
  • 2 cups Whole Milk
  • 1/2 cup Heavy Cream
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Vanilla Extract
  • Topping
  • 1/2 cup Flour
  • 1/2 cup Firmly Packed Brown Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • Freshly Grated Nutmeg, Optional
  • 1 stick Cold Butter, Cut Into Pieces
  • Warm Syrup, For Serving
  • Butter, For Serving
  • 1 cup Fresh Blueberries, For Serving

Preparation Instructions

For the French toast: Grease the baking pan with butter. Tear the bread into chunks, or cut into cubes, and evenly distribute in the pan. Crack the eggs in a big bowl. Whisk together the eggs, milk, cream, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla. Pour evenly over the bread. Cover the pan tightly and store in the fridge until needed (overnight preferably). Or you can make it and bake it right away---delicious no matter what!
For the topping: Mix the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt and some nutmeg in a separate bowl. Stir together using a fork. Add the butter and with a pastry cutter, and mix it all together until the mixture resembles fine pebbles. Store in a plastic bag in the fridge.
When you're ready to bake the casserole, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the casserole from the fridge and sprinkle the topping over the top. Bake for 45 minutes for a softer, more bread pudding texture or for 1 hour-plus or more for a firmer, crisper texture.
Scoop out individual portions. Top with butter and drizzle with warm pancake syrup and sprinkle with blueberries.

Summery Corn salad


  • 4 ears Corn
  • 4 slices Bacon
  • 2 Tablespoons Finely Chopped Chives Or Green Onions
  • 2 Tablespoons Good Quality Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon White Wine Vinegar, Or More To Taste
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin Or Really Good Quality Sweet Smoked Paprika
  • 1 bunch Arugula or one container cherry tomatoes
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350
I roast the corn in the shucks on a baking sheet for about 20 minutes.
While corn is roasting, cook bacon until crispy. Drain on paper towels and roughly chop.
Remove husks and silks and cut kernels off the ears. I cut the kernels off directly into the bowl I will be serving the salad in.
Add the bacon and chopped green onion or chives (I prefer chives, but I usually don’t have them in my fridge. I think the green onions work just fine) to the corn kernels.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil and vinegar. Add in the cumin or paprika if using. Pour over salad. Adjust to taste.
Roughly chop the arugula or slice tomatoes and add at the last minute. Salt and pepper to taste. Toss and serve.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Quick Cobbler

I forgot to get a finished product picture of this one, because we munched it up. But here is the pretty summer fruit:
This is such a simple recipe.  Take 32 oz frozen fruit (or enough to cover a 9x13), top with 1 box cake mix (or substitute), top with one can of sprite/7-up/fizzy drink, bake at 350 covered for 20 minutes, and then uncovered for 40 more.  Simple and summer yummy!

Cake Mix substitute

If you have a recipe that calls for white or yellow cake mix, and don't have one on hand, here is a quick substitute.  You can either just make enough for one batch, or make several directly into big baggies, to have ready for next time.  I use this in recipes like Applesauce Cake or Quick Cobbler.

2 cups flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 Tbl baking powder
1/2 cup dry milk
1 tsp vanilla (Only add if using right away, otherwise add the vanilla when preparing recipe.)

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Cinnamon Coffee

To your normal coffee grounds in a standard coffee pot add:
1.  A few "dashes" of ground cinnamon
2.  One "dash" of salt
Brew coffe as usual.  This will make a sweet and flavorful coffee.  The cinnamon adds the flavor and the salt cuts the acidity of the coffee. You could also try using the ingredients separately.  I probably won't make this every morning, but it is a nice treat occasionally.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Baked Beans

This recipe is from the Pioneer Woman.  I'm usually on the fence about baked beans, taking some to be polite, and pushing them around a bit.  But these were so, so good. 

8 slices bacon, halved
1 medium onion, cut into small dice
1/2 medium green pepper, cut into small dice
3 large cans (28 ounces each) pork and beans
3/4 cup barbecue sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup distilled or cider vinegar
2 teaspoons dry mustard or 2 tablespoons Dijon

Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees.

Fry bacon in large, deep sauté pan skillet until bacon has partially cooked and released about 1/4 cup drippings.

Remove bacon from pan and drain on paper towels.

Add onions and peppers to drippings in pan and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes.

Add beans and remaining ingredients bring to a simmer. (If skillet is not large enough, add beans and heat to a simmer then transfer to a large bowl and stir in remaining ingredients).

Pour flavored beans into a greased 13-by 9-inch (or similar size) ovenproof pan.

Top with bacon, then bake until beans are bubbly and sauce is the consistency of pancake syrup, about 2 hours.

 Let stand to thicken slightly and serve.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

CookBook Review

This is one of my all-time favorite recipe books.  The first half is money saving tips and the second half contains tons of great recipes.  This is the book that gave me Parmesan chicken strips, West african peanut chicken, and several other recipes that I make monthly!  Just last week I decided to re-read part #1, money saving tips.  I came up with a whole list of things to try.  Amazing what happens when you read a book twice!  Here was my action list:
-Try using cabbage instead of or in addition to lettuce in a salad.  Cabbage is cheap and lasts a long time.  Try a cabbage and shredded carrot salad with asian dressing, for example.
-Use cloth napkins!
-Check out the bulk section in the grocery store
-Get a bread machine
-Try harder to make cookies, rolls, biscuits, and breads at home
-Compare the prices of ground turkey and ground beef
-Re-do my master price list every year
-Compare prices of frozen chicken pieces vs. fresh
-Compare prices of bagged grated cheese vs. block
-Buy dry beans instead of canned and cook them in the slow cooker
-Try overnight or all-day roasts in the slow cooker, such as a pork roast
-Add veg oil to sesame oil for same flavor but lower cost
-Pre-cook whole fryers in slow cooker, then pull apart and freeze shredded chicken for future use, such as casseroles
-Post a list of seasonal fruits and veggies on the fridge for grocery list ideas
-Try oatmeal with ice cream at the chance picky eaters might like it!