Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

You know what jack-o-lantern carving time means... roasted pumpkin seeds! Mr.Perfect is a big pumpkin seed fan. He's also quite particular about them. Every October he reminds me that he likes them crispy not chewy. And every year my eye twitch gets a little worse.

What you need:
  • 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds, clean and dry
  • 1  1/2 tablespoons melted butter
  • salt, to taste
What to do:
Toss seeds in a baking pan with butter and salt, coating seeds completely.

Bake in a oven preheated to 300 degrees for about 40 minutes or until golden brown. Stir and check seeds occasionally.
 Crispy, just like Mr.Perfect requested.
 Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Rosemary Sweet Potato Fries

I'm not crazy about french fries. I could totally live without them and never give it another thought. That being said I absolutely adore sweet potato fries. They're sweet, salty and so good they don't need ketchup to be eaten.
What you need:
  • sweet potato (1 large potato per 2 people)
  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil per potato
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons chopped rosemary, fresh or dried
What you do:
Peel sweet potato and cut into your favorite fry shape.

Put cut potatoes into a zip-lock bag. Pour in a few tablespoons of olive oil in bag and toss around to completely cover potatoes in oil.

Add salt, pepper and rosemary to the bag and toss again, distributing the spices evenly.

Dump the potatoes on a baking sheet.

The trick to getting these fry guys crispy is to make sure they don't touch each other. So line them up neatly with out letting them touch.

Place potatoes in an oven preheated to 450 degrees. Bake for about 15 minutes then flip fries making sure they still are NOT TOUCHING each other. Bake for another 15 minutes or until they are crispy and have some caramelized edges.
 Sweet Potato Perfection!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Crock-Pot Baked Potatoes

Have I ever mentioned how much I adore crock-pot meals? I do! I live in Texas where it's HOT and any device that keeps me from using the stove or oven is a big winner. When I learned that baked potatoes could be made in the crock-pot I had to give it a try. Sure enough it's a super easy and convenient way to make baked potatoes.

What you need:
  • baking potatoes
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • aluminum foil
What you do:
Rub olive oil all over the potatoes.

Sprinkle salt all over the potatoes.

Prick the potatoes several times with a fork.

Wrap each potato in foil. 

Place the potatoes in your crock-pot, cover and cook on high for 4 1/2 to 5 hours or low for 7 1/2 to 8 hours.
 Ready for toppings galore!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Perfect Pancakes

I posted this recipe for pancakes around the time I began blogging. They are the most requested breakfast food in our house. Trouble sometimes asks for them for lunch and dinner. After making them about a million times I no longer even look at the recipe, they are etched into my brain. Trouble asked to have them in the morning before school so I'm making them tonight and they'll be easy to re-heat and serve in the morning.

I started off our marriage making  pancakes with Bisquick. Those Bisquick pancakes didn't satisfy Mr.Perfect's desire for big puffy, restaurant quality pancakes. I tried various recipes making the batter from scratch and some of them were quite good. But... not very long ago I came across this recipe that called for vinegar. I'm a big fan of secret/weird ingredients! So, when I made these and tested them on Mr.Perfect and Trouble I said not a word about the vinegar. My family loved these pancakes. I think Trouble's exact words were, "Mom these are the bestest pancakes ever!"

What you need:
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  •  1 teaspoon baking bowder
  •  1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  •  1/2 teaspoon salt
  •  1 egg
  •  1 teaspoon vanilla
  •  2 tablespoons butter, melted

Also let me give you a little tip. I got this pan from my mom, Nana, for Christmas last year. She got it on Amazon, she's a big Amazon fan. Anyway, I think this pan was designed just to make wonderful pancakes and I love it! I NEVER have to use cooking spray or grease it. It's a perfect pancake pan!
What you do:
  1.  Combine milk with vinegar and set aside for about 5 minutes. Yep, that's right! The milk is getting all nice and sour. Yummy!
  2. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a mixing bowl. 
  3. Whisk egg, melted butter and vanilla into soured milk. 
  4. Pour the flour mixture into the soured milk mixture. Do not over mix this, mix until everything is just wet. 
  5. Feel free to add stuff to these pancakes. Mr.Perfect and I like mashed banana and pecans. Trouble likes chocolate chips. Blueberries are great too!
  6. Heat the pan at a medium low temp. I don't grease my pan because I've got an awesome pan but, if you need it this would be the time to grease your pan. Pour 1/4 cupfulls of batter on the skillet. Cook until you see little bubbles on the pancake. Flip pancake and cook until browned.
Banana Nut Pancakes

Monday, October 1, 2012

Chilled Oatmeal

I love Greek yogurt! Yes, I would marry it if I could. I especially love Greek Gods Greek yogurt with honey. I also love oatmeal, maybe not wedding worthy but it's pretty darn good. The thing about oatmeal is that I live in Texas where it's really really really HOT. Eating hot oatmeal in the morning isn't appetizing at all. So after seeing a few recipes for cold oatmeal made with yogurt and milk I decided I'd experiment with my favorite Greek yogurt. I found that equal portions of milk, Greek yogurt and oatmeal are the perfect base for my new favorite breakfast.

The night before I combine 1/3 cup of oats, milk and Greek yogurt in a jar.

Any kind of fruit, preserves, nuts or whatever can be added to the oatmeal mixture. I'm partial to strawberry preserves and almonds. How much do I add? About a tablespoon of each but more or less is fine. The add-ins possibilities are endless. Berries, nuts, dried fruit, frozen fruit, jelly, jam, spices, maple syrup, Nutella, peanut butter, chia seeds, flax seeds, etc... are all great additions to this chilled oatmeal.

Once everything is mixed I put the oatmeal jar in the refrigerator to set overnight.

In the morning I grab my jar of oatmeal and eat while I'm looking at TMZ. No! I don't really go to TMZ but Mr.Perfect thinks I do. Seriously... I'm just checking my email and maybe looking at a little Facebook.

To my sweet silly enchanting friend who doesn't eat breakfast, This Is For You!