Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Oven-Baked Steak

I've never been really good at making a steak that didn't turn out well-done. My husband prefers his medium, so I've been trying to get it right for him. This recipe worked out perfectly. I was able to make mine the way I like it...and coincidentally the way I'm good at cooking it: well-done and his the way he likes it. The marinade was the best I've ever had and Nick raved about it too.

(Printable Version)
Recipe from

What you need:
  • Steak
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp. Montreal steak seasoning
  1. Mix your marinade together and put it with the steak into a baggie. I marinated mine most of the day. Take your steak out 30 minutes before cooking.
  2. Bake at 450 for 10 to 12 minutes or bake at 325 for 25 to 30 minutes - this should bring it to a nice medium. You can cook it longer if you prefer a more well done steak (like me).

Linked up at...

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Thin Mint Muddy Buddies

I was in the middle of preparing my Pinterest post for tomorrow and I was thinking of how much I really want to make the muddy buddies I'll share {tomorrow}. I was brainstorming the different variations I could make...the first one that I thought of was Snickers and then it dawned on me....THIN MINTS! Almost had a Obi-Wan/Luke Skywalker moment, except Obi-Wan was telling me "Use the Thin Mints, Sarah!"

I used those Thin Mints..

Well..okay, not all of them. I only have one box left and I put half a sleeve in the freezer for later. Now on to how you make these yummy muddy buddies!

Philly Cheesesteak Omelets

Two things you may know from reading my blog: 1) I love to cook for my husband, even if I may not like what it is. 2) My husband loves Philly cheesesteaks and eggs. I decided to try and combine the two. The experiment was a success and it was delicious. I'm starting to come around to the whole cheesesteak thing.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Secret Recipe Club: Hamantaschen

As with my tradition of switching between meals and sweets, this month I picked a sweet. It was hard though because there were three very good looking sweets on "Oh! You Cook!", the blog that I was given this month. Dena is a very funny lady and her recipes look so great!

My husband has been getting on my case about making too many sweets, so I figured I could hook him in with something that contains fruit (: So between the Almond Cake, Tapioca Pudding, and Emergency Crostatas, it was decided that I would make the Dena's Emergency Crostatas aka Hamantaschen. Say that 10 times fast!

{If you really are attempting to do that, it's pronounced HAH-mahn-tah-shen}

Hamantaschen is a three-cornered pastry with filling that is eaten during the Jewish holiday of Purim. I am not Jewish, but I did enjoy these anyways. They are a perfect cookie to eat with a cup of coffee in the morning. Cookies for breakfast, if nothing caught you before, that has you sold, right?

{Side note: Hamantaschen is traditionally served with a meat dish and thus is usually made dairy-free}

Jalapeno Popper Burger

We're jalapeno monsters! So it's no surprise that we'd test out a little jalapeno popper burger. This was fantastic. I will be trying to get them a little thinner next time, but they were still really good :)

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Fantastical Feature: Food Network Magazine Great Easy Meals


I am a Food Network junkie :) I love me some Paula Deen, Bobby Flay, Anne Burrell, and Alton Brown. The only magazine subscription I have is to Food Network. So it isn't surprising that I have a good collection of Food Network cookbooks. This first one is all about easy meals.

Of the three recipes we tried, this had to be my favorite: Vegetable Fried Rice with Bacon from pg. 305. It was the perfect amount of broccoli and bacon combination!

I really enjoyed these Meaty Quesadillas from pg. 80. They are basically like a taco in quesadilla form - which is awesome and really, you can never go wrong with quesadillas. Yum!

Beer Braised Chicken on pg. 138 was easily my husband's favorite from this cookbook. It's very much a man's meal anyways, but it was a huge hit with him. I really loved the pearl onions.

This cookbook gets 4 utensils from me.
There are a ton of great recipes that I want to try and then a bunch of super fancy meals I'd be too scared to try. By super fancy, I mean stuff with lamb and seafood.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Teddy Graham Trail Mix

This has got to be one of the cutest recipes I've tried in a while! My kids were more than excited when I made a big ole batch :) My husband and I have been eating it a bunch too.

(Printable Version)
Recipe from Elle's New England Kitchen

What you need:
  • 1 box Cheerios (we used multi-grain)
  • 1 box Teddy Grahams (we used chocolate chip)
  • 1 box Raisinets
  • 1 box yogurt covered raisins
  • 2 cups pretzels
  • 2 cups M&Ms
Mix all the goodies together and store in an airtight container. 
We have this fancy schmancy one from Wally World. 
 I didn't want to dirty a bowl so I just layered mine :)

Linked up at...

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Hibachi Chicken & Fried Rice

I have been obsessed with hibachi ever since my uncle took my family out to eat at a fantastic hibachi restaurant in Knoxville, TN when I was 11. I don't think that place is in business anymore, but Knoxville does now have Wasabi's - and I am in love with it. We try to eat there at least once every time we visit home. Since that's only really twice a year (boo!), I've been experimenting with different hibachi-style recipes. This one is definitely the very best I've tried. It was really good. The original used sesame oil, but I just double the vegetable oil since my oldest is deathly allergic to sesame.

^That picture was the first picture I took with my new camera! The ones below are from my old one...

~Twisted Thursday #48 ~

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Quick & Easy Cinnamon Butter Buns

Recently, I tried out cloverleaf rolls and loved them. I was pleasantly surprised to see that I had another recipe that is similar - I made 8 buns and ate 4 of them. They were so delicious. This is also the first recipe with all the pictures taken with my new baby, a Canon Rebel T3 :)

Quick & Easy Cinnamon Butter Buns | 4 ingredients for a quick & delicious breakfast |

Baked Bree is a great blog - I've made Hot Chocolate Cookies with Marshmallows and have many more bookmarked recipes to try.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Spicy Chicken and Pepper Jack Pizza

I've been on a bit of a homemade pizza kick, if you haven't noticed. We've been experimenting around and trying different toppings and different recipes. The kids weren't big fans of this one (they don't like peppers), but my husband and I were. I loved having the peppers/salsa instead of sauce!

My Baking Addiction has been a source of much drooling on my part. The sweets, oh the sweets, that Jamie posts! We tried Snickers Cheesecake for Valentine's Day - you'll see that recipe in the beginning of March :) We've also tried her wonderful BBQ Beef Sandwiches and Sweet Coleslaw recipe. Definitely stop by her blog and look at all the amazing stuff she has up :)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Cloverleaf Rolls

I've been wanting to try these rolls for a long time - or at least a homemade version. These were very good. I did forget the egg wash though :(

(Printable Version)
Recipe from Tracey's Culinary Adventures

What you need:
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 2 tsp. instant yeast
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg, well beaten

Combine milk, butter, and sugar in small saucepan and cook over low until the butter is melted. 
Set aside and cool.

With a mixer and a dough hook, combine yeast, salt, and flour.

Slowly add liquid ingredients to flour mixture.
Mix for 4 to 5 minutes until it's smooth and elastic.

Cover and rise until doubled for 1 1/2 hours.
Divide dough into 12 equal portions on a floured surface. Then divide each twelfth into thirds. 
Roll into little balls.

Place 3 dough balls into a greased muffin cup in a 12 cup muffin pan. Repeat with each set of thirds.

Cover the pan with a kitchen towel and let rise for another hour.
Preheat the oven to 375* and brush the tops of the rolls with the beaten egg (I forgot this step!).
Bake for 15 minutes. These are best served warm.

    Friday, February 17, 2012

    Sleazy Chicken

    I love the name of this recipe almost as much as I love the chicken itself. Very delicious and simple.

    It comes from one of my favorite blogs, Finding Joy in My Kitchen. SnoWhite is the host of Friday Favorite Finds and is always posting great homemade foods and shortcuts! We have tried pepperoni grilled cheese and goody poody pancakes. This month we will be testing out the baked vegetable sandwiches and can't wait!

    (Printable Version)
    Recipe from Finding Joy in My Kitchen

    What you need:
    • 2 tbsp. butter
    • 2 cloves garlic, mined
    • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
    • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
    • 2 to 4 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
    • 1/2 tsp. pepper
    • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
    Preheat oven to 350*. Melt butter and add in garlic.

    Mix together bread crumbs, Parmesan, pepper, and Italian seasoning.

    Dip chicken in garlic butter and then coat in bread crumb mixture.

    Place in a baking dish, drizzle any remaining garlic butter over chicken.

    Bake for 45 to 60 minutes and then top with cheddar cheese. Cook 5 more minutes.

    Thursday, February 16, 2012

    Chicken & Broccoli Alfredo Pizza

    This is the absolute best pizza that I have ever have. It was so amazing. It was gone in no time here.

    (Printable Version)
    Recipe from The Garden of Yum

    What you need:
    • One pizza dough (I used this recipe)
    • 1 pkg. chicken breast, cooked and shredded, seasoned with salt, pepper, and garlic
    • Olive oil
    • 2 cups broccoli, cut into small pieces
    • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
    • 4 tbsp. butter
    • 2 tbsp. cream cheese
    • 3/4 cup cream
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
    • Mozzarella cheese
    Preheat oven to 375* and precook your pizza dough about 8 minutes.

    Heat a tbsp. of olive oil and saute broccoli until tender. Add garlic, salt, and pepper to the mix. Cook for 2 more minutes and then take out of the pan, set aside.

    Heat 4 tbsp. butter in the same pan on medium-low. Add cream cheese and cook until melted. Add cream and milk, simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add Parmesan cheese. Stir well.

    When dough is precooked, spread alfredo sauce evenly on top. 
    Add chicken and broccoli. Then sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. 
    Cook for 10 to 15 more minutes.

      Linked up at...
       Miz Helen’s Country Cottage

      ~Twisted Thursday #47 ~

      Tuesday, February 14, 2012

      Copycat Otis Spunkmeyer Banana Muffins

      I am going to just go ahead and say that this isn't a breakfast that you should make regularly, but for the special occasion - these are some of my favorite muffins to eat. They are a pretty good copycat!

      Saturday, February 11, 2012

      Fantastical Feature: Fix-It and Forget-It Cookbook


      I wanted to break out one of my crockpot cookbooks to use one week and this one was first on my shelf. It's got a zillion recipes in it, okay, only 700, but that's close to a zillion. What I really like about this one is that there are a lot of similar recipes in it. I often look for variations and there is plenty of room for that with this cookbook.

      We tried the Three Bean Taco Soup on p. 39. My husband and kids loved it. I thought it could've used more meat and no corn, but I did love the packet of ranch seasoning mix. That bite was perfect for this soup.

      We also tried the Scalloped Taters from pg. 236. You'll have to excuse my poor picture, but these were great! We had them with our pulled root beer pork sandwiches.

      I give this cookbook 3 utensils.
      Overall, it's a good cookbook. I don't think it's one I would use often though.

      Thursday, February 09, 2012

      ~Twisted Thursday #46 ~

      Wednesday, February 08, 2012

      Bacon & Pineapple Pizza

      My husband and I used to have movie nights back when we dated. When we didn't buy Wendys, we got Papa John's pizza - always bacon and pineapple for the toppings. Definitely a great combo that everyone should try out!

      Tuesday, February 07, 2012

      Triple Chocolate Cake

      February is Chocolate Cake Month!!


      This girl loves chocolate cake...and I really mean that. Chocolate cake is probably my favorite of all desserts. So I was completely stoked when I found out February was chocolate cake month for the Crazy Cooking challenge. At the end of this post, you will find a linky list that showcases all the recipes that everyone participating has posted. Go visit them!! Share your favorites with family and friends. I love to use StumbleUpon - to stumble, share on Facebook, and tweet about recipes I find. I also love to pin my favorite finds! Next week, Tina will announce the ULTIMATE chocolate cake recipe. {P.S. I'm going to try and stumble, pin, facebook, and tweet as many of these as possible!}

      Now, in my recipe arsenal I have plenty of cake recipes. However, I immediately knew what recipe I was going to try when I found out Feb's theme. I recently saw Triple Chocolate Birthday Cake on Hannah in the Kitchen. Hannah posted this recipe and shared it on the Sweet Tooth Friday link up. She made this gorgeous cake for her grandmother's birthday. Why did I choose this one? For one, it's TRIPLE chocolate. You cannot go wrong with that. Two, it's got mousse in it. Three, it uses a from scratch recipe instead of a box mix of chocolate cake. I'm trying really hard to learn how to make a successful cake from scratch.

      Hannah doesn't post often, but every recipe she has on her blog is one I want to try. They are all very delicious looking!! This particular recipe was absolutely incredible. It's rich, the cake is so fluffy and moist, and the mousse and frosting combo - *drool*

      Triple Chocolate Birthday Cake
      Recipe from Hannah in the Kitchen

      Monday, February 06, 2012

      Feb 2012 Menu Plan

      For the first time since September, I am doing a full month of planning. Week 1 starts with yesterday and week 4 is incomplete because it'll be March (:

      Breakfast Recipes
      Week 1: Otis Spunkmeyer Blueberry Muffins, Cinnastix, Chicken Fajita Skillet Breakfast, Raspberry & Cream Cheese Braided Loaf, Broccoli & Ham Frittata, Morning Glory Muffins, Philly Cheesesteak Omelets
      Week 2: Cereal, Granola Oatmeal Bake, Quick & Easy Cinnamon Butter Buns, Banana Pizzazz Pancakes, Eggs and Toast, Super Sonic Burritos, Cereal
      Week 3: Poptarts, Almond Danish Rolls, Cereal, Blueberry Yogurt Pancakes, Eggs and Toast, Gingerbread Muffins, Western Omelet
      Week 4: Blueberry Walnut Baked Oatmeal, Cereal, French Toast Fingers, Eggs and Toast

      Lunch Recipes
      Week 1: Golden Unicorn {eat out}, Hot Dogs with chips and yogurt, Sandwiches, Mac'n'cheese, Leftovers, Baked Veggie Sandwiches, Jalapeno Popper Grilled Cheese
      Week 2: BLTs, Hot Dogs with yogurt, chicken nuggets and french fries, leftovers, Milan Mozzarella Munchies, Mac'n'cheese, Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese Soup
      Week 3: Pepperoni Pizza Twist, sandwiches, chicken nuggets and fries, mac'n'cheese, Leftovers, Sandwiches, Pizzadillas
      Week 4: Cheddar Broccoli Soup, Leftovers, Crispy Tortilla Crusted Tilapia, Mac'n'cheese

      Dinner Recipes
      Week 1: 3 Cheese Chicken Penne Pasta, Baked Potato Soup, Walking Tacos, leftovers, Hibachi Chicken & Fried Rice, Jalapeno Popper Burgers and french fries, Pepperoni Pizza
      Week 2: Queen Ranch Casserole, Baja-Lime Chicken with baked hasselback potatoes and Creamed Carrot Crunch, Steak with broccoli casserole and salad, Brinner: Cinnamon Roll Pancakes, Mexican Chicken with Jalapeno Popper Sauce with Broccoli Cornbread, Tuna and Red Pepper Pasta, Open Faced Italian Meatball Sandwiches
      Week 3: Sweet & Spicy Bacon Chicken, Leftovers, Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Peppers, Salsa Chicken Taquitos, BBQ Pulled Pork and Coleslaw Sandwich, Leftovers, The Lady's Chicken Noodle Soup
      Week 4: Pasta with Creamy Primavera Sauce, Japanese Steakhouse Hibachi Chicken and Steak with veggies, Leftovers, Sizzling Chicken & Veggie Skillet

      Week 1: Secret Recipe Club recipe, Strawberry Cake (for Cami's birthday on 11th)
      Week 2: Samoas (and shortbread cookies), Double Rum Cake
      Week 3: Old Fashioned White Bread
      Week 4: Butterbeer