Lemon, Basil and White Chocolate Cookies
- 2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons lemon zest, finely grated
- 1 tablespoon basil, finely chopped into small pieces
- 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
- 1 cup white chocolate, chips
- 1 cup superfine sugar
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, lemon zest, chocolate chips and basil.
- In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg, and lemon juice and beat until combined. With the mixer on low, beat in flour mixture to combine.
- Drop teaspoonfuls (about 1” apart) onto two cookie sheets. Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes or until cooked and a golden color. Remove from the oven to cool.
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 cup powdered/icing sugar
- 2 tablespoons lemon zest
Whisk fresh lemon juice and powdered sugar until smooth and creamy. Frost cookies and sprinkle with fresh lemon zest.
Hot German Potato Salad
- 9 potatoes, peeled
- 6 slices bacon
- 3/4 cup chopped onions
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons white sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup water
- 1/3 cup distilled white vinegar
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender but still firm, about 30 minutes. Drain, cool and slice thin.
Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, crumble and set aside, reserving drippings.
Saute onions in bacon drippings until they are golden-brown.
In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, celery seed, and pepper. Add to the sauteed onions and cook and stir until bubbly, then remove from heat. Stir in water and vinegar, then return to the stove and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil and stir for one minute. Carefully stir bacon and sliced potatoes into the vinegar/water mixture, stirring gently until potatoes are heated through.
Crispy Buffalo Chicken
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast tenderloins
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 egg beaten with 2 TBSP hot sauce
- 2/3 cup dried bread crumbs
- 2 TBSP steak seasoning (or any all-purpose blend of pepper and salt)
- 3-4 TBSP oil ( I used olive)
- 1/2-3/4 cup hot sauce (I use Frank’s Red Hot or Texas Pete)
Preheat your oven to 400°. Begin heating 1.5 TBSP of the oil in a large frying pan set over medium-high heat. Line up three separate bowls and fill them in this order- first with the flour, second with the egg mixture, and third with the bread crumbs combined with steak seasoning.
Begin by dredging each tenderloin first in the flour (you only need a light dusting- shake off excess), then dip into the egg bath, then dredge in the bread crumb mixture-pressing to coat the tenderloin well. Place each prepared tenderloin on a large plate.
Place half of the chicken tenderloins in the hot, oiled pan all at the same time, spacing them evenly. You don’t want to overcrowd your pan. Cook for about 4 minutes, without moving them, so that they develop a nice crispy crust on one side.
Flip and cook for an additional 3 minutes.
Place the chicken on a wire rack set atop a roasting pan. Place in the oven and cook at 400 for about 5-7 minutes, just so that the chicken can cook through.
When the chicken tenders are cooked through, remove them from the oven and fill a shallow bowl with the hot sauce. Dip each tender into the hot sauce, just to quickly coat. Set the pieces back on the wire rack until you’re done coating all the chicken. Serve with blue cheese dressing and crunchy celery sticks.
Chick-fil-A Bites with Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce
- 2 large chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces and seasoned with salt & pepper
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/4 cup pickle juice
- 1 egg
- 1-1/4 cups flour
- 2 Tablespoons powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 cup peanut oil, divided (or canola or vegetable oil)
Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce:
- 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons yellow mustard
- 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- Whisk together egg, milk and pickle juice, and pour into a large ziplock bag or bowl. Add chicken pieces and marinate in the refrigerator for 2-4 hours.
- Combine flour, powdered sugar, salt and pepper in a large ziplock bag. Shake to combine. Remove chicken from the marinade and add into the bag. Shake to coat the chicken completely.
- Heat half the oil in a large skillet or dutch oven over medium-high heat (6 or 7 out of 10.) Test the oil by dropping in a bit of the flour mixture. If it sizzles, the oil is ready, if it pops, lower the temperature a bit.
- Gently place chicken pieces into the oil with tongs. Do this in 2 batches, as you don’t want to overcrowd the pan. Cook the chicken for 3-4 minutes, or until golden brown on one side. Turn the chicken over and allow to cook for 3-4 more minutes. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate. Heat the remaining oil and continue with the other half of the chicken pieces.
- Stir together the honey mustard dipping sauce ingredients, and serve with the hot chicken bites.
Spaghetti Squash with Creamy Sundried Tomato ‘n Mushroom Sauce (Gluten free, dairy free, vegan)
- 1 medium-large spaghetti squash
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/2 onion roughly chopped
- 3-4 cloves of garlic minced
- 1 spicy pepper or 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper (optional)
- 1/4 cup of sundried tomatoes or about 6-7 slices
- 2 cups of mushrooms sliced
- 1 1/2 cups rice milk (or other non-flavored milk or milk substitute)
- 1/4 tsp salt, pepper to flavor
- chopped parsley to garnish
Preheat oven to 375
Slice spaghetti squash lengthwise and scoop out the stringy pulp and seeds (reserve seeds for roasting). Fill a large rectangular casserole dish 1/2” deep with water and place the spaghetti squash flesh down inside. Bake the spaghetti squash for about 40-45 minutes, until you can easily poke the flesh with a fork and it separates into spaghetti strings (roasting time will vary with the size of your spaghetti squash).
Meanwhile, heat 1/4 cup of olive oil in in a deep frying pan over medium-low heat. Saute the onions, garlic, and pepper until soft. Add in the sundried tomatoes and let simmer a few minutes, then add in the mushroom slices for a few minutes. Add in the rice milk and salt and bring just to a rolling simmer and then reduce to low/medium-low, stirring on occasion.
When the spaghetti squash is ready, remove from the oven and let sit for about 5 minutes until it is cool enough to handle. Then scoop out the spaghetti strings with a fork. You can just loosen the strings and keep the skin as a pretty bowl, or you can transfer it to a bowl if you prefer. Then top with the sauce. Garnish with fresh ground pepper and fresh parsley.
Sweet and Sour Chicken Recipe
- 1 pound of boneless and skinless chicken thighs or breasts, cut into 1” chunks
- 1 egg white
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (1/4 teaspoon table salt)
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 10-ounce can pineapple chunks (reserve juice)
- 1/4 cup juice from the canned pineapple
- 1/4 cup white vinegar
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (1/4 teaspoon table salt)
- 2-3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon cooking oil
- 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1 inch chunks
- 1 yellow bell pepper, cut into 1 inch chunks
- 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
In a bowl, combine the chicken with the egg white, salt and cornstarch. Stir to coat the chicken evenly. Let sit for 15 minutes at room temperature or up to overnight in the refrigerator.
In the meantime, whisk together the pineapple juice, vinegar, ketchup, salt, and brown sugar.
Heat a large frying pan or wok over high heat until a bead of water instantly sizzles and evaporates. Pour in the 1 tablespoon of cooking oil and swirl to coat. It’s important that the pan is very hot. Add the chicken and spread the chicken out in one layer. Let the chicken fry, untouched for 1 minute, until the bottoms are browned. Flip and fry the other side the same for 1 minute. The chicken should still be pinkish in the middle. Dish out the chicken onto a clean plate, leaving as much oil in the pan as possible.
Turn the heat to medium and add the remaining 1 teaspoon of cooking oil. Let the oil heat up and then add the bell pepper chunks and ginger. Fry for 1 minute. Add the pineapple chunks and the sweet and sour sauce. Turn the heat to high and when the sauce is simmering, add the chicken pieces back in. Let simmer for 1-2 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Timing depends on how thick you’ve cut your chicken. The best way to tell if the chicken is done is to take a piece out and cut into it. If it’s pink, add another minute to the cooking.
Taste the sauce and add more brown sugar if you’d like.
Roasted Ranch Potatoes with Bacon and Cheese
- 2 pounds potatoes (unpeeled, washed and cut into chunks)
- 1/2 cup ranch dressing (bottled, not packet)
- 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese, plus more for topping (if desired)
- 1/4 cup crumbled, cooked bacon
- 1 tablespoon dried dill weed
- 3 scallions, washed and chopped
- Non-stick cooking spray
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Mix together (in a large bowl) the ranch dressing, dill, cheese and bacon. Add in the potatoes. Sprinkle in a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss to coat potatoes.
- Spoon into a greased 9 x 13 baking dish. Cover with foil.
- Bake for 60 minutes. Stir gently halfway through to get the bottom potatoes rotated so they don’t become burnt and to ensure that the middle and top potatoes get a chance to brown.
- Remove foil. Raise oven temperature to 400 degrees. Gently stir again, as necessary.
- Bake for an additional 15 minutes, then sprinkle on a little more cheese, if desired. Bake a few more minutes or until everything is gooey, browned and bubbly on top.
- Serve with scallions sprinkled on top for garnish.
- Great with a dollop of sour cream.
NOTE: The original recipe called for jarred real bacon pieces. I made the recipe using real bacon that I cooked until crisp and then broke into pieces. Although I am a firm believer that there is never a substitute for real, fresh bacon, I would think that the kind from a jar would be fine (as long as you don’t use immitation bacon bits).
Yields 2 dozen
- 1/3 cup warm water, 110 - 115 degrees
- 2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
- 1/3 cup + 1/4 tsp granulated sugar
- 1 1/3 cups whole milk, warmed to 110 - 115 degrees
- 3/4 cup salted butter, at room temperature, divided
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour*
Measure out warm water into a liquid measuring cup then stir in yeast and 1/4 tsp sugar, whisk until yeast has dissolved then let rest 5 - 10 minutes until mixture is foamy. Pour yeast mixture (scrapping out excess) into the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, add in 1/3 cup sugar, warm milk, 5 Tbsp butter, egg and salt. Blend mixture until combine.
Add in 2 cups flour and mix until well combine. Switch attachment to a dough hook, with mixer on low speed, slowly add remaining 2 1/2 cups flour and mix until dough is smooth and elastic, about 4 - 5 minutes (dough should be slightly sticky when touched). Transfer dough to a greased, large mixing bowl and cover bowl with plastic wrap. Allow dough to rise in a warm place, free from draft, until double in size, about 1 1/2 hours.
Punch dough down and divide dough into two equal portions. Shape each portion into a ball. Roll each dough ball out on a lightly floured surface into a large circle about 13 inches across (try to keep dough as much of an even thickness as possible). Spread each circle of dough evenly with 2 Tbsp butter. Cut each circle into 4 equal quarters, then each quarter into 3 wedges (just imagine cutting pizza slices or pie slices). Roll each wedge up, beginning on wide (outside) edge.
Transfer rolls to a buttered 10 x 15 inch cookie sheet (the tip of the rolled wedge should be tucked on the bottom. Note that you can fit 3 rows of 8 rolls). Cover rolls loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until double in size, about 1 hour. During the last 10 minutes of rising preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Remove plastic wrap and bake rolls in preheated oven for 14 - 16 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and brush with remaining 3 Tbsp butter (you may not need all of it).
Serve warm or allow to cool and store in an airtight container.
*I found 4 1/2 cups to be perfect for me but if you live somewhere very dry or humid, or at a very high altitude you may want to reduce or increase measurement by a 1/4 of a cup, just note the dough should be fairly sticky. Don’t add too much flour or your roll will be heavy. The dough should be sticking to the bottom of the mixing bowl near the end of mixing just not the sides. It should stick slightly to a clean fingertip then spring back slightly when pulled away. Not gummy and not dry. Most of you will probably find 4 1/2 cups to work just right as well.