Sunday, January 31, 2010

Pioneer Woman Blueberry Cobbler ~ by Sarah

This is another Pioneer Woman recipe that did not disappoint!  In fact, it is so delicious that it has now easily become one of my top five favorite desserts of all time.  Seriously, it is AMAZING!  This probably has to do with the full cube of butter.  I have an unhealthy relationship with butter.

1 stick butter, melted
1 1/4 c. plus 2 T. sugar
1 c. self-rising flour (I didn't have any, so I made my own--1 1/2 t. baking powder and 1/2 t. salt for every one cup of all-purpose flour)
1 c. milk
2 c. fresh (or frozen) blueberries (or blackberries, peaches, raspberries, etc.)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 3-quart (9x13 inch pans are 3 quart) baking dish with butter.  Place the stick of butter in a microwave-safe dish.  Heat in a microwave for 30 to 45 seconds until melted.  In a medium bowl, whisk 1 cup of the sugar with the flour and milk.  Whisk in the melted butter.  Rinse the blueberries and pat them dry.  Pour the batter into the baking dish.  Sprinkle the blackberries evenly over the top of the batter.

Sprinkle 1/4 cup sugar over the berries.  (I only sprinkled about 1 tablespoon because my blueberries were delicious and naturally sweet.  Plus, I don't like usually like sugar-coated desserts.)  Bake for 1 hour, or until golden brown and bubbly.  **Note: Check frequently after a half hour has passed.  Depending on your oven, it may cook more quickly.  Take it out when it looks like the picture below and when a toothpick comes out clean.  It's not nearly as good when overcooked!**  When 10 minutes of cooking time remain, sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar over the top.  (I didn't do this, either.)  Top with whipped cream or ice cream, if desired.  Amazing!!!



Potato-Bacon Chowder ~ by Sarah

This is a recipe Mom has been making for years and I LOVE it!  I usually serve it with cornbread, but tonight I served it with a loaf of french bread I had purchased and it was delicious when dipped in the chowder.

8 strips bacon, cut up
1 c. chopped onion
2 c. red potatoes
1 c. water
1/2 t. salt (I also add garlic salt and seasoned salt)
dash pepper
10 3/4 oz. can cream of chicken soup (if you're a chicken hater like Kelsey and Molly you could probably use cream of celery or something like that)
1 c. sour cream
1 3/4 c. milk
2 T. chopped fresh parsley (or 1 T. dried parsley flakes)

Cook bacon in 3 qt. saucepan.  Add onion; saute 3 minutes.  Pour off drippings (but I usually take the bacon out and put it on a paper towel so it drains really well--I then add it back to the soup at the end).  Add potatoes, water, salt, and pepper.  Bring to a boil.  Cover; simmer 10-15 minutes until potatoes are tender.  Gradually stir in soup, sour cream, milk, and parsley.  Bring to serving temperature over low heat.  Do not boil.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Hanning Shish Kabobs ~ by Kelsey

We like to Bar-B-Que.  A lot.  I especially like the part where there is one less pan to wash.  So, here is a recipe we use often.

Sir loin steaks, cubed
Mushrooms (My favorite part!)
Bell Peppers
Sweet Onions
Whatever else you like, such as potatoes, yellow squash, etc
Your favorite marinade

Cut up the meat and put it in the bowl with marinade.  Let it sit in the fridge a couple of hours.  Cut up the veggies, put them in a different bowl with marinade.  They don't have to sit as long.  When you are ready, spear the ingredients with the skewer and place on the bbq.  I make some pretty ones with a pattern, but mostly I make them all single-ingredient.  For instance, the potatoes and zucchini can take longer to cook than the onions, so if you put them on different skewers you can cook them longer.  Brush the skewers with the left over veggie marinade while they are cooking.  I suppose you could use the meat's marinade, but I worry that the marinade that had raw meat in it won't get heated enough if you brush it on top of the skewers while they cook, so we use only the left over veggie marinade just to be on the safe side.

Fiesta Turkey Soup ~ by Molly

I based this recipe on one I found on (the website for the health magazine SELF). It was super easy to make, delicious and healthy. I also liked that it had really simple ingredients--things that are usually already in the pantry/I can find in Germany. Sorry, Kels, it has turkey, but I'm sure pork would work well, too. The website called it chili, but it wasn't very thick, so it seemed more like a soup to me.

3-4 Servings
Prep time: 20 minutes

1 can tomato soup (I used Tuscan for added flavor)
1 can kidney beans, drained
1 can corn, drained
1 bell pepper
1/2 pound turkey*
Garlic powder, Tabasco sauce, Onion powder to taste

Grill the turkey until cooked completely and the pepper until softened. Heat the soup, then add the remaining ingredients. Season to taste. Serve with sour cream or shredded cheese for added calories and flavor. Enjoy!

*The recipe on the website called for ground turkey. This is something that is impossible to find in the average German supermarket. I used a fillet instead and cubed it into bite-sized pieces. Like I said before, I think pork fillets would be a good substitute.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Wes's Tacos ~ by Sarah

These are actually Wes's mom's tacos, but he's been making them for years, so I'll give him credit.  According to Anderson legend, Wes and his brothers would sit and eat 12 tacos each when their mom would make them for them as teenagers.  Based on how delicious these are, I can definitely see a pubescent teenage boy scarfing down a dozen of them!

They're pretty much your run-of-the-mill tacos, but what sets them apart is their shells.  Corn shells deep-fried in oil make them terrible for your hips, but amazing for your taste buds!

2 lbs. ground beef
2 packages taco seasoning
small corn tortillas
vegetable oil for frying
lettuce, tomatoes, avocados, onions, cheddar cheese, olives, sour cream, pico de gallo, picante sauce, and/or taco sauce for garnishment

Brown ground beef, add taco seasoning packet, and cook as directed.  Heat vegetable oil in skillet over medium-high heat until it's very hot.  Cook corn shells, one at a time, about 10 seconds per side.  You want them cooked, but not stiff.

Layer individual cooked shells on paper towels (folded over the shell) as you cook them.  This keeps them warm and absorbs extra grease.

In the middle of the shell, place ground beef mixture and whatever garnishment you desire.  Tonight we used my pico de gallo on them and it totally made them.  Best I've ever had--and we make these a lot!

The shells will be too floppy to hold their shape on their own, so they can be messy to eat, but so worth it!

Meatloaf ~ by Jessie

Since I didn't become a contributor to the blog until the day after I made this last, I don't have a picture, but rest assured that it's beautiful. :-)

Don't be put off by the prunes, this is the best meatloaf I've ever had, and I believe they're a big reason for that. It's a recipe originally published by Gourmet in February 2008, but I got it from (my favorite recipe site). The first time I made it I didn't have ground pork so I used all ground beef and it was equally delicious.

1 cup fresh bread crumbs (from 2 slices firm white sandwich bread)
1/3 cup whole milk
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium celery rib, finely chopped
1 medium carrot, finely chopped
2 tblspns butter
2 tblspns Worcestershire sauce
1 tblspn cider vinegar
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/4 lb bacon (about 4 thick slices), chopped
1/2 cup pitted prunes, chopped
1 1/2 lbs ground beef
1/2 lb ground pork
2 large eggs
1/3 cup finely chopped Italian parsley

Preheat oven to 350 with rack in middle.

Soak bread crumbs in milk in large bowl.

Meanwhile, cook onion, garlic, celery, and carrot in butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. cover skillet and reduce heat to low, then cook until carrot is tender, about 5 minutes. Removed from heat and stir in Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, allspice, 2 tsp salt, and 1 1/2 tsp pepper. Add to bread crumb mixture.

Finely chop bacon and prunes in a food processor, then add to onion mixture along with beef, pork, eggs, and parsley and mix together with your hands. Pack mixture into a 9"x5" oval loaf in a 13"x9" shallow baking dish.

See below if you like a little something on top of your meatloaf.
Bake until an instant read thermometer inserted into center of meatloaf registers 155, 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Remove from oven and let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.
I like a little glaze of sorts on my meatloaf and this recipe doesn't have one, so I make my own. When I make up my own recipes, I don't measure ingredients, so this is my best guess, but do it to your own taste.

1/3 cup ketchup
2 tblspns balsamic vinegar
1 tblspn brown sugar

Mix the ingredients together and spoon over meatloaf for last 45 minutes of cooking.


**Edit 1/27/10 by Sarah**
Here are some pictures I took from when I made it tonight.  It was delicious!

Jessie's glaze recipe was so good!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Ravioli ~ by Sarah

I'm not exactly sure where I came across this recipe, but for the last couple of years, it's been a favorite in our house.  It is SO fast and easy to prepare!

1 lb. ground beef, browned
1 jar marinara sauce
18 oz. ravioli, cooked and drained (I used 4-cheese today, but I usually buy spinach and cheese to sneak more nutrients in!)
1 1/2 c. mozzarella cheese, shredded
4 T. Parmesan cheese, shredded

Mix meat and sauce in large bowl.  Add pasta and 1 cup mozzarella.  Mix.  Spoon into casserole dish.  Top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan.  Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes or until bubbly.



Pico De Gallo ~ by Sarah

This is another Pioneer Woman favorite in our house.  Wes will eat an entire bowl of it in one day!  Simple, but so refreshing!

roma tomatoes
fresh cilantro
white or yellow onion 
jalapeno pepper

Directions: Chop up equal amounts of roma tomatoes, onion, and cilantro and put in a medium-sized bowl.  Dice the jalapeno (after removing the seeds and membranes--unless you want your pico hot, hot, hot!) and add it to the bowl.  Squeeze the juice of half the lime into the bowl.

Stir the ingredients all together and add salt to taste.


Audrey loves it!

Wes will even stop what he's doing in his shop to come eat some!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Peanut Butter Cocoa No-Bake Cookies ~ by Kelsey

2 cups white sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2/3 cup peanut butter
3 cups quick cooking oats
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Combine sugar, butter, milk, cocoa and peanut butter in medium saucepan.  Cook over medium heat until mixture comes to rolling boil.  Remove from heat, cool one minute.  Add oats and vanilla. Stir to mix well.  Quickly drop mixture by heaping teaspoons onto foil on cookie sheet.  Cool in refrigerator.

Ham, Cream Cheese, and Pickled Asparagus Roll-Ups ~ by Kelsey

Spread cream cheese on deli ham.  Put a pickled asparagus (grown in the Northwest, purchased at Costco) in the middle.  Roll them up.  DELICIOUS!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Tim's Taco Soup ~ by Kelsey

I got this recipe back when I worked at the Farm Service Agency in La Grande.  Tim, a guy that also worked there, brought this soup to a potluck.  Everyone loved it, and I stole the recipe.  It's very simple, I almost always have the ingredients on-hand, and my kids will eat it.  There are no measurements, and it cooks all together in one pan (less dish-washing!).  I will list the ingredients, you adjust the amounts to suit you.  We always top it with sour cream or shredded cheese, and a side of bread.  And it's even better the second day...
Since this is my first post, let me clarify what I mean by "ground beef".  That means hamburger cut by Gary at the Wasco Market.  Nobody does it better.  In fact, I wouldn't even bother buying hamburger anywhere else.  Gary's is lean, you never have to drain any grease, and it is yummy.  Hopefully it comes from beef cattle that have benefited from growth hormones and antibiotics.  None of that organic stuff.  Since we haven't fattened our own in awhile, we buy 50 pounds at a time from Gary.  Okay, here is the recipe:

Ground Beef (my packages are about 1 1/2 pounds, so that's how much I use)
Taco Seasoning Packet
Ranch Dressing Packet
2-4 Cans of Beans (Kidney or Black, or Both)
Frozen Corn
Canned Diced Tomatoes

Cook the beef, then add the other ingredients and simmer as long as you like.


The Ultimate Cheesecake ~ by Molly

This is the cheesecake I made for Gavin's birthday last summer. It's one of my favorite recipes!

Recipe courtesy Tyler Florence (Food Network)

Prep Time:
30 min
Inactive Prep Time:
4 hr 35 min
Cook Time:
45 min
6 to 8 servings
• 2 cups finely ground graham crackers (about 30 squares)
• 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
• 1 pound cream cheese, 2 (8-ounce) blocks, softened
• 3 eggs
• 1 cup sugar
• 1 pint sour cream
• 1 lemon, zested
• 1 dash vanilla extract
• Warm Lemon Blueberry Topping, recipe follows
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
In a mixing bowl, combine the crust ingredients with a fork until evenly moistened. Lightly coat the bottom and sides of an 8-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray. Pour the crumbs into the pan and, using the bottom of a measuring cup or the smooth bottom of a glass, press the crumbs down into the base and 1-inch up the sides. Refrigerate for 5 minutes.
For the Filling:
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese on low speed for 1 minute until smooth and free of any lumps. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and continue to beat slowly until combined. Gradually add sugar and beat until creamy, for 1 to 2 minutes. Add sour cream, lemon zest, and vanilla. Periodically scrape down the sides of the bowl and the beaters. The batter should be well mixed but not over-beaten. Pour the filling into the crust-lined pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
Set the cheesecake pan on a large piece of aluminum foil and fold up the sides around it. Place the cake pan in a large roasting pan. Pour boiling water into the roasting pan until the water is about halfway up the sides of the cheesecake pan; the foil will keep the water from seeping into the cheesecake. Bake for 45 minutes. The cheesecake should still jiggle (it will firm up after chilling), so be careful not to overcook. Let cool in pan for 30 minutes. Chill in the refrigerator, loosely covered, for at least 4 hours. Loosen the cheesecake from the sides of the pan by running a thin metal spatula around the inside rim. Unmold and transfer to a cake plate. Using a spatula spread a layer of Warm Lemon Blueberry topping over the surface.
Slice the cheesecake with a thin, non-serrated knife that has been dipped in hot water. Wipe dry after each cut.

Warm Lemon Blueberries:
• 1 pint blueberries
• 1 lemon, zested and juiced
• 2 tablespoons sugar
In a small saucepan add all the ingredients and simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes or so until the fruit begins to break down slightly. Leave to cool before spreading on cheesecake.

Spicy Bean Soup ~ by Molly

This is a delicious recipe--but some of the ingredients are a little hard to find in The Dalles. I've used other kinds of beans when I couldn't find cannellini, and used other colors of lentils and it worked just fine.
Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis (Food Network)

Prep Time:
20 min
Inactive Prep Time:
Cook Time:
45 min
10 servings
• 3 tablespoons olive oil
• 2 onions, chopped
• 2 celery stalks, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
• 1 carrot, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
• 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
• 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
• 1/2 cup chili powder
• 1 tablespoon ground coriander
• 1 tablespoon ground cumin
• 2 teaspoons dried oregano
• 1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper, optional
• 2 (14 1/2-ounce) cans diced tomatoes with juices
• 1 (11 1/2-ounce) can tomato juice
• 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
• 1 (3-inch) piece Parmesan cheese rind, optional
• 2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
• 8 cups vegetable or chicken broth
• 2 (15 1/2-ounce) cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
• 2 (15-ounce) cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
• 1/2 cup dried green lentils
• 3 cups broccoli florets
• 2 zucchini, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch thick rounds
• 2 yellow crookneck squash, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch thick rounds
• 1/2 cup freshly shredded Parmesan
• 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil leaves

Heat the oil in a heavy large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery, carrot, bell pepper, and garlic, and saute until the onions are translucent, about 15 minutes. Add the chili powder, coriander, cumin, oregano and crushed red pepper, and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes with their juices, tomato juice, tomato paste, cheese rind, and 2 teaspoons of salt. Add the broth, garbanzo beans, cannellini beans, and lentils. Stir in the broccoli, zucchini, and yellow squash. Bring to a simmer over high heat. Decrease the heat to medium. Simmer, uncovered, until the lentils are tender and the mixture thickens slightly, stirring often, about 20 minutes. Season the stew to taste with more salt, if desired.

Ladle the stew into bowls. Sprinkle with the shredded cheese and basil, and serve.

Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Icing ~ by Sarah

This is the recipe for the cake I made for Grandma Shirley's birthday. It came from my Pioneer Woman cookbook.  The frosting makes it very rich!
1 cup shortening
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups cake flour
1 1/4 t. salt
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 t. vanilla
1 t. baking soda
1 1/2 t. vinegar
1 oz. red food coloring (2 oz. if you want it really red--I only used one, though)
1 1/2 t. cocoa powder

1 1/2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 pounds powdered sugar
1/4 t. salt
2 t. pure vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350. Grease two round 10-inch cake pans (2 inches deep) with non-stick baking spray. Blend together the shortening and sugar in a mixing bowl, using an electric mixer. Set aside. Sift together the flour and salt. Set aside. Mix the eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, baking soda, and vinegar in a separate bowl. Alternate adding the flour mixture and the buttermilk mixture to the shortening mixture in the mixing bowl, mixing after each addition. In a small bowl, mix the red food coloring and cocoa powder. Pour into the mixing bowl. Mix until just combined. Don't overbeat. Pour the batter evenly into the cake pans and bake for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for 20 minutes before removing the cakes from the pans. Cool completely before icing.

Icing: Place the cream cheese and butter in a mixing bowl and whip until smooth. Sift the powdered sugar and add it to the bowl. Add the salt and mix. Add the vanilla and mix until smooth.

Ice between the two cakes, the sides, and the top. (I had plenty of frosting left over.) Refrigerate any leftovers.