Monday, November 29, 2010

Tangy Turkey Salad

This was a yummy, unique way to use up some Thanksgiving turkey leftovers. The cranberries and oranges appealed to me, so I gave it a shot. I don't love pecans, put I put them in there anyway and liked them in this recipe. This was a refreshing alternative to the typical turkey/chicken/tuna salad.

Tangy Turkey Salad

2 cups cooked turkey breast, cubed
1/2 cup cranberries, finely chopped
1 orange, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup mayo
1 tsp. mustard
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 chopped pecans

In large bowl, combine all ingredients; chill. Serve on the bread of your choice.

(Makes about 6 sandwiches.)
(From Gooseberry Patch's Harvest Kitchen Cookbook)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cranberry Pomegranate Sauce

Last year I ate my Thanksgiving meal in a hospital bed and still had another month to go on bedrest. My wonderful family came to visit, of course, bearing Thanksgiving food from home. I was thrilled to receive this, of course, but couldn't have been more disappointed in one thing...


If I wasn't so incredibly thankful, it would've ruined my meal! I didn't let it though, but this year I took the cranberries into my own hands and made them myself, my first attempt at cranberry sauce and I was thrilled with the turnout. I even heard my very traditional, "keep things the same" father-in-law say that he tried it and liked it (even though he usually prefers the jelly kind in a can )! Maybe I've converted him? Nah, I don't think so.

The recipe was Pioneer Woman's. I saw it on her website and was immediately sucked in because of the beautiful cranberry photos. It's as delicious as it looks!!

Pioneer Woman's Cranberry Pomegranate Sauce

1 bag (about 12 To 16 Oz) Fresh Cranberries
16 ounces, fluid Pomegranate Juice
¾ cups Sugar, More Or Less To Taste

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan and cook over medium-low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Mixture will thicken as it cooks, and will thicken more as it cools.

Cool in a jar or bowl in the fridge.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Well, as you can see, there is a Pumpkin Festival going on in my house. It seems like everything I want to make has pumpkin in it. It won't last forever, I promise, but I sure am enjoying this!

I found this recipe in Kraft Food and Family Magazine (Holiday 2009) and they're pictured with a cup of coffee and called Pumpkin Cream Cupcakes. I can't feel good about calling anything I eat for a breakfast a cupcake, so I changed the name to suit my needs! :-) In my world a cupcake should have gobs of buttercream icing on top anyway...

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

1 pkg spice cake mix
1 pkg vanilla instant pudding
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 pkg cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare cake batter as directed on package. Add dry pudding mix and pumpkin; mix well. Spoon into 24 paper-lined muffin cups.

Beat cream cheese with mixer until creamy. Blend in sugar and egg; spoon over batter. Swirl gently with small spoon.

Bake 18-21 minutes (longer for me) or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes and cool completely.

Special extra: Stir 1/4 ground nutmeg into 1 1/2 cups thawed Cool Whip and spread over cooled cupcakes. Keep refrigerated.

I actually froze these and Riley and I ate them in the mornings on our way to school and work. When there were only 3 left, he said, "Okay Mommy, you can have one and I can have two, right?" He loved these, told me I needed to make some more because they were "the best", and they froze well. I just zapped them for 30-45 seconds in the morning right before we walked out the door.

Pumpkin Crunch

I've made this before, but never posted and when we decided to have a Southern Cooking potluck lunch at work to celebrate some fall birthdays, I figured Paula Deen's Pumpkin Crunch would suffice. It was a big hit and I didn't even ice it...I can only imagine that the iced version would be that much better!

Pumpkin Crunch

1 (15 oz.) can fresh pumpkin
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 c. sugar
3 eggs, beaten
1 box yellow cake mix
1 cup chopped pecans (I used chopped walnuts instead)
2 sticks butter, cut into pieces
1 (8 oz.) pkg. softened cream cheese
1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together pumpkin, evaporated milk, cinnamon and sugar until well combined. Add eggs and mix well.
Pour mixture into a 9X13 baking dish prepared with a non stick spray. Sprinkle cake mix evenly over entire top. Sprinkle nuts evenly over cake mix and top with butter pieces. Bake at 350ยบ F for 50-60 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Prepare frosting while cake is cooling. In a large mixing bowl using a hand mixer, whip cream cheese until light. Add in whipping cream and continue to whip until fully combined and thickening. Add powdered sugar and cinnamon and whip until smooth.

To Serve: Scoop out a slice of the pumpkin crunch and top with a dollop of the cream cheese frosting, or frost the entire pumpkin crunch with the frosting.

It was so delicious, this is all I brought home!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Green Chili Mac and Cheese

I spend lots and lots of time at H.E.B. I've never been a taste tester when they offer samples of things in the store, but now that Riley is old enough to want to try everything around, he does. My H.E.B. has The Cooking Connection inside and I do pay attention to what is going on in there. One day, we were rolling by and I heard the chef telling someone about her Green Chili Mac and Cheese. I backed up with no warning and had to try a bite. Riley and I both loved it, in fact, he wanted it for dinner that night! Too bad 'cause it wasn't cool enough outside for me to be making anything like that.

Well, it finally cooled off and I finally had a chance to make it. It was pretty simple (though we did get lots of dishes dirty!) and a hit, once again. Thanks for a great recipe, H.E.B.!!

Green Chili Mac and Cheese

1 1/2 pounds uncooked Ground Beef
1 jar Texas Two-Step Tomatillo & Green Chili Stew Mix
16 ounces elbow macaroni, penne or farfalle pasta
1 pound EZ Melt or Velveeta Cheese, cubed
2 teaspoons Adams Reserve Garlic Powder
1 teaspoon Adams Reserve Chili Powder (variety of your choice)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup shredded Colby Jack cheese

Heat oven to 350 F. Coat a 3-quart baking dish with non-stick spray.

Cook macaroni in boiling water according to package directions.

Meanwhile, cook ground beef in a large skillet over Medium-High heat; crumble into small bits with a spoon while browning.

Place stew in a 3-quart saucepan or microwave-safe dish; add cubed cheese, garlic and chili powder. Microwave or heat over Medium to melt cheese.

Stir in macaroni, beef and cream; season to taste. Transfer to baking dish.

Top with shredded cheese; bake 15 to 20 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

This was a hit! Riley even wanted to take some in his lunchbox one day.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Creamy Pumpkin Dip

I'm a fan of pumpkin and that hasn't always been the case. I have several recipes for Pumpkin Dip in my stash and this one stood out because it was different. Of course, I had to try it immediately and I wasn't disappointed! It's lighter than the usual version. Try it!

Creamy Pumpkin Dip

1 8 oz container Cool Whip (thawed)
1 small pkg instant vanilla pudding mix
1 can pumpkin
pumpkin pie spice to taste

Mix together pudding, pumpkin, and pumpkin pie spice. Fold in Cool Whip. Chill until ready to serve. Serve with ginger snaps or apple slices.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Dinner in a Pumpkin

This is an annual tradition that we started a few years ago at our house. I tried it on Halloween night, but there's just too much going on, so it is a November 1 tradition now. That worked much better for our house!

Because a friend asked for the recipe, I'm posting it tonight, in case you have time to pull it off for tonight or plan for dinner soon. It's on our menu for tomorrow! I'll post photos later.

This one's for you, Julie:

Dinner in a Pumpkin

1 medium sized pumpkin
1 lb. hamburger meat
1 can mixed vegetables (I use frozen mixed)
1 can Rotel
1 can beans (I use black, but use what your family likes)
1 can corn
1 pkg. taco seasoning mix
1 pkg Spanish rice (already prepared)

Cut off top of pumpkin and clean outside and inside. Start your Spanish rice.

Meanwhile, brown hamburger meat, then add vegetables, Rotel, beans, and taco seasoning.

Add sliced mushrooms.

Scoop mixture into pumpkin and bake at 350 degrees for one hour on cookie sheet.
Stir Spanish rice into mixture after baking.

When you serve, you can serve chunks of the pumpkin with the meat/rice mixture.

Hope your family enjoys this one as much as we do!!

(Serves 4-6, but can easily be doubled/tripled to feed a crowd--just make sure your pumpkin is big enough.)

Happy Halloween!!