Saturday, May 5, 2012

Beef and Cheese Quesadilla w/ Pico de Gallo, Guacamole and Baked Chips

Happy Cinco de Mayo! This is always a happy, fun day at our house, because we love any reason to celebrate and eat Mexican food! The Holiday Recipe Club is also celebrating today, so it's party, party, party!!! I chose tomatoes as my ingredient this time around, and nothing says tomatoes and yummy, like pico de gallo. I rounded out this meal with a Steak and Cheese Quesadilla, a fresh bowl of guacamole, and some home baked chips! Have a great Day!
Pico De Gallo
3 Roma Tomatoes
1 small Onion
1/2 Serrano Chili
1/2 cup fresh Cilantro
1 tablespoon Lime Juice
11/2 teaspoon Salt
Cut your tomatoes in half.
Cut each half into 8 strips.
Chop all the strips into diced tomatoes.
Dice your onion, by cutting it in half, slicing it down,
and then chopping the slices.
My onion pics did not turn out, sorry.
Cut your serrano pepper down the middle, lengthwise.

Remove all the seeds and membrane by running
the pepper under cold water. Remember that the pepper
transfers to your hands, so don't touch your eyes 
until you wash your hands.
Cut the half of the chili into 4 strips.
Place the strips right next to each other, and chop 
the strips into tiny diced pieces.
Mix everything in a bowl.
Pull the cilantro leaves off the stem, roll them together,
and chop. Add to bowl.
Roll the lime around on the counter, under your hand.
This loosens up the pulp, and helps the juices flow.
Cut in half, and squeeze out your lime juice.
Add to bowl and stir.
Add salt now, if you want. I don't add it, and I think it
is delicious!
Let sit for about an hour at room temperature.
This will let all the flavors infuse into a delicious dish.

Baked Tortilla Chips
 Pan spray
2 Flour Tortillas
Garlic Powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
 Fold your tortilla in half, and cut each half into six chips.
Spray a baking pan with pan spray. Place each 
cut tortilla chip on the pan with a little space
between each one. Very lightly spray
pan spray over chips. Sprinkle with garlic powder.
If you would like to add salt, now is the time.
Bake at for 8-10 minutes.
Remove and let cool.

Easy Guacamole
1 Avocado
1/4 -1/2 Pico de Gallo
1 tablespoon Sour Cream
1/2 teaspoon Lemon Juice
Cut a fresh, ripe avocado in half, around.
Remove the seed.
You want your avocado soft to the touch, but not too soft.
They can go from good to bad in no time.
Scoop the avocado out with a spoon, and smush down 
with a fork in the bowl. (Yes, smush is a technical, culinary term).
Add the pico de gallo, sour cream, and lemon juice.
Mix well. This should be made right before serving.
You can refrigerate it for a very short time(30 minutes)
but it taste its best when eaten right after being made.

Beef and Chicken Quesadilla
 1/2 pound Sirloin Steak
Shredded Fiesta Blend Cheese
Onion
2 Flour Tortillas
Slice your steak down into wafer thin pieces.
Place the meat on your cutting board, and tenderize
with a meat mallet. Then turn the meat over and do it
on the other side.
Cut your onion into slices.
Pan fry the steak. It will need to be turned
over a couple times to be done.
You can make a half a quesadilla or a whole. To make a half,
 just sprinkle the quesadilla with cheese, top with steak and 
onion on half and fold. 
When you fry, just fry half then flip 
to other side.
To make a whole quesadilla, place the tortilla with cheese 
and meat in the bottom of the frying pan. Cook bottom until brown,
and then flip entire quesadilla over. I did this by 
flipping the quesadilla onto a plate and then sliding it back 
into the pan.
Cut quesadilla into 8 pieces and serve.
Top with sour cream and guacamole,
salsa and chips on the side.
Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Check out what other Holiday Recipe Club members made today:


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Pizza Steak Hoagies! Yum!

One of my favorite things to eat as a kid was a Pizza Steak Hoagie. As far as I know, this sandwich can only be found in the Cincinnati/Kentucky area where I grew up. I have tried to find the sandwich listed on a menu anywhere else, but no luck. I do know that it is alive and well, and still tasting delicious back in my hometown. Since I do not see a trip back home in the near future, I came up with my own recipe to satisfy our craving!

Pizza Steak Hoagie w/ Baked Fries
(makes 2 sandwiches)
2 Cube Steaks
Pizza Sauce
Mozzarella Cheese
Provolone Cheese
2 Soft Sub Rolls
1 large Russet Potato
Garlic Powder
Olive Oil
Pepper

To get started, cut the potato in half, then turn it sideways,
and slice. The important thing to do is to make sure the slices
are all about the same width. That way they will all cook 
to the same degree in the same time period.
Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.
Place the cut potato slices in water. Drain several times
eliminating as much starch as possible.
Dry each of the potato slices between paper towels.
Thank you to my helper, who helped with the entire
meal! :)
Spread some olive oil on a baking sheet, and then spread
the oil all over with a paper towel.
Sprinkle garlic powder and pepper all over the baking
sheet. Add salt if you would like.
Place the potatoes on the sheet in a single layer.
Bake the potatoes in the oven for 8-10  minutes.
Pull the potatoes out and flip each potato to the other side.
Bake for 8-10 minutes again.
Bake for 8-10 minutes for a total of 4 times, flipping the
potatoes each time.
While the potatoes are cooking, flatten the
cube steaks with a mallet. They are a rather tough steak
if not tenderized with a meat mallet.
Pound them out until they are thin,
and they are the size of the buns.
Once your potatoes are done, set your oven to broil on high.
Spray a baking sheet with pan spray, and then place the two
pieces of meat on a baking sheet.
 Broil for 3 minutes, and then flip your meat with a spatula,
and broil for 3 more minutes.
As soon as your steaks come out from under the broiler,
have your buns ready to go in.
Open the buns up, place pizza sauce on each side,
top one side with provolone, and one side with
mozzarella. Or, you can go all mozzarella, or all provolone.
Place under broiler until cheese starts to melt, and edges
reach the crispness you desire.
Put meat on bun. There are some places where you can get
the sandwich with pickles, and/or onions. These are
delicious also. If you wanted to add onions, just saute
in a skillet on the stove.
Enjoy!

Thanks for joining me today!
 


Saturday, April 28, 2012

Cookie Journey Thursday~Practice Cookies

This week I decided to make some practice cookies to work on improve my basic decorating skills. I used some flower cutouts, mainly because they are pretty and the colors are cheerful, but also because I have a Mother's Day and a gardening cookie brainstorm going on.
Here is what I cut out.
I started with a pink tulip. I still find myself piping too 
close to the edge. I need to remember that.
I love these colors, don't you?
So springy and happy!
I outlined the edges and the inside of the large tulips 
with a #2 tip and the small tulips with a #1 tip.
It's rather hard to see in the pics, but I think I liked the #1
tip better. With the #1 tip the result is a more delicate
look, which is perfect for the flowers.
I still need to work on ending my piping.
I don't like how it looks.
See that big blob at the bottom.
The yellow tulip looks a little better.
The pink one is my favorite. I will continue to work on this 
throughout the week. 

Thanks for joining me today!
Don't forget to join the Land O'Lakes giveaway! It ends 
Saturday, April 28, 2012 at midnight Pacific Time.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Blueberry Bars are now Blueberry Crumbs!

I went shopping to get some granola. Or maybe just to see what was available. I'm not sure. I wanted to make some homemade granola bars to send to my son at school. But I saw this box of Organic Cascadian Farm French Vanilla Almond Granola and it had this great sounding recipe on the back.  There was even a picture for this recipe called Vanilla Almond Blueberry Bars. So I brought it home and I couldn't wait to try this out. They turned out delicious, but not so pretty. :(

Blueberry Crumbs
1 Egg White
1/2 cup Butter, softened
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 teaspoon Almond Extract
1 1/4 cup Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 1/2 cups French Vanilla Almond Granola
8 oz Frozen Blueberries
1/4 cup Sugar

Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Grease an 8" square pan.
Beat your egg white, butter, brown sugar, and almond extract
in a bowl until creamy.
Mix the baking soda, baking powder, and flour together,
and then mix it into the wet mixture.
Stir the granola by hand.
It should look like this.
Take 2/3 of the mix and spread it into the bottom of your pan.
I used this Dollar Store spatula to flatten the mix in the pan.
I thought it was pretty handy for $1!! The perfect size to fit in
the pan. 
In a separate bowl, mix the blueberries and the sugar.
Pour the blueberries over the dough.
Here's where I think I made my big error. I didn't think
there were enough berries, so I added a 1/2 cup more.
Sprinkle the rest of the dough over the blueberries.
Bake for 25-30 minutes.
Let cool completely on cooling rack.
I let them cool for 45 minutes.
When I went to cut these bars, they started to fall apart.
So, I put them in the refrigerator for about an hour.
When I took them out and started to cut them, they fell apart again.
That's when I decided that they would have to be
blueberry crumbs instead of blueberry bars.

They were actually delicious as crumbs. I think the extra blueberries
may have added additional juices that the bottom crust just could not handle.

Next time I will not go hog wild on the blueberries~even though they are sooo good!

Thanks for joining me!

The Freshman Cook is having a great time at the following parties:
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