Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Peach Cobbler in the Crockpot

          Remember how I was on a crock pot kick? Well, as I told you, I made peach cobbler the other night.  It was a shot in the dark when I searched “crock pot desserts” yesterday, but I easily found an array of recipes to choose from.  I love peaches, and I knew we had the frozen peaches that this recipe called for, so this was an easy choice.  My next crock pot recipe will be something with lots and lots of chocolate.
            The cobbler only takes about 3 hours to cook, and it tastes like it was made in the oven. It was absolutely fantastic. I wish I hadn’t overeaten all the Mexican food or else I would have chowed down on the cobbler some more.
            You can find the original recipe at food.com

·         Easiness---8---The instructions from the original recipe were a bit confusing, because I didn’t know if all the ingredients were supposed to be mixed or layered.  I ended up mixing them, and I am very glad I did, because everything was evenly distributed.
·         Yumminess---7---This was good, but I think it should have cooked a bit longer. It was a little bit doughy, which I know some people like. Not me.  There is a fine line between moist and doughy, and I prefer moist.  I also felt that it could have used some sugar as well. When I make it again I will be sure to add about ¼ cup of granulated sugar.  I also wish I had used more peaches than the recipe called for.
·         Repeat---7---I really enjoyed this dessert, and I think it could be easily done with other fruits as well.  My next attempt will be with blackberries. Stay tuned!

Not a great picture, but I try my hardest :)

Here is the recipe:

·         2 cups frozen peaches, sliced (I recommend using at least 3)
·         1 tablespoon cornstarch
·         1/2 teaspoon vanilla
·         1/4 cup brown sugar
·         1/4-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
·         ½ Box of Vanilla Cake Mix (9 oz. total)
·         4 tablespoons melted butter
·         (I would consider adding ¼ cup granulated sugar)

·         Lightly grease or spray (Pam) a crock pot.
·         Place peaches in the bottom, sprinkle with cornstarch and stir.
·         Add vanilla and brown sugar (and granulated sugar if desired), then stir.
·         Next, add cinnamon and cake mix, then stir.
·         Drizzle the melted butter then stir.
·         Cover and cook on high for 3 to 3 ½ hours.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Mexican Corn Dip

          Here is the next thing I made on Mexican night.  Of course, I found this on Pinterest.  Honestly, Pinterest has to be one of the best inventions ever.  I originally wanted to make this a couple weekends ago when Cameron and I went to an outdoor concert in his sister’s subdivision, but I ran out of time and resorted to guacamole, which is obviously still a good choice.
          This recipe is served cold, which I was a little bit nervous about, as I don’t like cold cheese. YUCK.  However, I can’t even tell the cheese is there, because the flavors brought in by the peppers and Rotel are superb!  I also made it in a low fat version with Light Mayo and Light Sour Cream.  If I had any, I would have used Light Cheddar Cheese as well, but I was all out.
          You can find the original recipe over here at TastyKitchen.  This website has some great recipes that I look forward to trying!

·         Easiness---10---All you have to do is put everything in the bowl and mix it all up.
·         Yumminess---7---Really good, but I would make a few changes.  The recipe originally called for 1 cup each of mayo and sour cream, but I think it needs maybe ¾ cup of each instead. Or, because I am not a big fan of Mayonnaise, I would use just sour cream.
·         Repeat---8---Yes! Next time I have to bring a dish to a party I will absolutely bring this.

·         1 can Corn
·         1 cup Cheddar Cheese
·         1 can Rotel Original
·         1 cup (or ¾ cup) Mayo (I used Light)
·         1 cup (or ¾ cup) Sour Cream (I used Light)
·         1 Red Bell Pepper-chopped
·         2 JalapeƱos-chopped
·         1 can Chopped Green Chiles
Everything you need.

·         Chop red bell pepper and jalapenos and add to a medium size bowl.
·         Measure out the Mayo and Sour Cream and add to the bowl.
·         Stir everything together, then add the corn, Rotel, and chopped green chiles.
·         Stir everything, then add the cheddar cheese last. It is important to add the cheese last, because it could use less/more than the 1 cup.
·         Eat it with tortilla chips!


Cream Cheese Crock Pot Chicken

          Not sure if I mentioned this, but our oven is broken. At first, I thought this would be an absolute tragedy, but then I realized that I had three crock pots sitting politely in the pantry waiting for their turn.  Well, dear crock pots, it is now your time to shine!
          I went a little crazy with cooking Mexican food today.  I think I even started speaking fluent Spanish for a little while.  The list includes: Cream Cheese Crock Pot Chicken, Mexican Corn Dip, Sweet Corn Tomatillo, and for dessert….drum roll please….Peach Cobbler in the Crock Pot. I know, sounds delicious right?
          The first recipe, Cream Cheese Crock Pot Chicken, I found through Pinterest.  The original recipe can be found here, but I changed it up a little bit so I rewrote it for my blog.  It was so simple to make, much like any crock pot recipe, in that you literally put everything in the crock pot and turn it on, and then it works its magic.  The name of this recipe doesn’t exactly do it justice, because it is definitely a Mexican dish, but I will stick with the original name.  My family loves Mexican food, so this was perfect for us, as was the Mexican Corn Dip and Sweet Corn Tomatillo.
Here are all the ingredients, plus taco seasoning (not pictured)
Here is everything in the crock pot.
·        Easiness---10---I had everything I needed, so all I needed to do was throw it all in the crock pot and let it cook for about 6-8 hours.
·        Yumminess---8---I wish it was a little bit spicier. Next time I will get the HOT Rotel instead of ORIGINAL.
·        Repeat---10---Absolutely! This will be the new regular dish when we make Mexican food.

Here is the recipe:

·        4-6 Chicken Breasts (I used 6)
·        1 can Black Beans (drained and rinsed)
·        *1 can Rotel Original (drained)
·        1 8oz package Cream Cheese (I think 1/3 Less Fat would be OK)
·        1 can Corn or 1 ½ cups frozen corn
·        1 packet Taco Seasoning (or to taste)
·        1 ½ cups Cheddar or Mexican Cheese

·        Put all ingredients except cheese in the crock pot. DO NOT ADD WATER.
·        1 hour before serving add cheese.
·        Season with Taco Seasoning as desired.
*I will also use HOT Rotel instead of ORIGINAL


Friday, August 24, 2012

Pesto Pesto Pesto

          Thanks everyone for reading my blog! Blogger lets you view your blog’s stats, and all in the last 15 hours or so I went from 36 to 163 views! That is so great! I guess it means that my writing and recipes aren’t all that bad.
          Here is my first original recipe that you get to see! Of course, some of the credit must be given to my mom as well! Last night we were on a Pesto Kick. Our family LOVES pesto, and by “my family” I mean myself and my mom.  It doesn’t really matter what everyone else likes….speaking of which “everyone else” includes my dad, sister (age 19 and away at college), 2 brothers (age 16 and 13), and my grandma and grandpa who live with us.
          Back to the pesto… my mom got an idea from a magazine to make some sort of pesto chicken, but then completely ignored the recipe. She decided to make it in the crockpot, which made it incredibly tender and yummy. The other half of the recipe was Pesto Pasta made by me, all from my imagination, which also turned out super yummy. 
The only note we had on this recipe is that, while they were both equally delicious, they would have been better served separately.  The chicken was water and wine based while the pasta was cream based.  Basically, we think they each need to be the star of their own show. But, it’s totally up to you how you would eat it.
This is the Pesto Chicken about 2 hours before being served.
I almost forgot to get a picture of the patsa, so that's
why it is almost gone!
My rating for the entire recipe is:

·         Easiness---9---Crockpot recipes are great, because you get to cook all day without actually being there. Also, it was easy because we literally had every ingredient we needed.
·         Yumminess---7---Together, they get a lower score, but separate I would give them both a 9.
·         Repeat---8---I will probably make each again, but not together. I will make the chicken to serve with white or brown rice, and the pasta with some sort of parmesan crusted chicken.
Here is the chicken recipe:

·         ½ Cup white wine
·         2 Cups (or less) water
·         1 Tbs Chicken Bouillon
·         ¼ C Pesto (prepared, could use more if desired)
·         Salt
·         Corn Starch to thicken (as desired)
·         2 lemons (squeezed or sliced)
·         4-6 Chicken Breasts


·         Using a crock pot, add the white wine, water, and chicken bouillon.
·         Stir in the chicken bouillon then add the pesto and chicken breasts.
·         Allow to cook for up to 8 hours. 
·         One hour before serving, add salt, corn starch, and lemons (squeezed).
·         Serve with Pesto Pasta or possibly white or brown rice.

Here is the pasta recipe:

·         ¾ Cup of Half n Half
·         ½ Cup of Pesto (prepared)
·         3 dashes of garlic salt
·         1-2 Tbs butter (not necessary)
·         1 Cup (or more) of parmesan
·         1 dash of corn starch (probably not needed)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Cherry Rum Cake

           This recipe is one of the firsts I have made. I made it last October for my 21st birthday. Yeah, I know, I made my own cake…very sad. I thought back to one of the best desserts I have ever eaten, and I remembered a cake that a classmate brought into a Spanish class fiesta during my freshman year of high school. And I’m not lying when I tell you that the cake tasted like heaven.
            Now don’t let the rum scare you away, because it is definitely what makes the cake super moist and flavorful.  If I am telling the absolute truth….I like to make myself a little rum and coke to drink while making this recipe. It just seems like the right thing to do.
            I found the original recipe at allrecipes.com which is a fantastic site if you are just starting out. Anyone can post a recipe there.  Here is the original recipe.

I really promise that I will get better at taking pictures of my food.
I bought a DSLR camera recently so that should help a little bit.
Here is how I would rate this recipe:

·         Easiness---6---The cake itself is very easy to make, but the glaze is tricky because it can burn very easily.  Be sure to not leave the stove while making it.  It is also easy for it to boil over so watch that too.

·         Yumminess---9---I love moist cake. In fact, it’s the best way to eat cake.  However, this cake can get TOO moist, so be careful with your glaze.

·         Repeat---10---Absolutely. I have made it twice already, and will probably make it again come fall time. It reminds me off fall for some reason.


·         * 1 cup chopped walnuts

·         1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix

·         1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix

·         4 eggs

·         1/2 cup water

·         1/2 cup vegetable oil

·         **1/2 cup dark rum

·         1/2 cup butter

·         1/4 cup water

·         1 cup white sugar

·         **1/2 cup dark rum

·         ***


·         Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease and flour a 10 inch Bundt pan. Sprinkle chopped nuts evenly over the bottom of the pan.
·         In a large bowl, combine cake mix and pudding mix. Mix in the eggs, 1/2 cup water, oil and 1/2 cup rum. Blend well. Pour batter over chopped nuts in the pan.
·         Bake in the preheated oven for 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Let sit for 10 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto serving plate. Brush glaze over top and sides. Allow cake to absorb glaze and repeat until all glaze is used.
·         To make the glaze: in a saucepan, combine butter, 1/4 cup water and 1 cup sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat and continue to boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup rum.

*I omit the walnuts and use cherries instead, because I am not a big fan of walnuts.

**I use clear rum, not dark. I am not sure if this makes it taste different or not.  I am interested in trying to make it with Malibu rum and make a Strawberry flavored cake mix to make it more summery.

***The second time I made it I added about a tsp of Cherry Extract, hence the name Cherry Rum Cake.

Strawberry Lemonade Cake

I think I am starting to get a hang of this blog thing.  I really wish I had taken more photos of recipes I have made in the past so that I could share them with you….but for now my iphone pictures will have to make do!
I made this cake for Easter and then again a few months ago because it turned out fabulously.  I found the original recipe over here at easybaked, but I changed up a few things to make it my own.  It still tastes absolutely delicious, provided you like strawberry lemonade…because the name does not lie.
Whenever I make a new recipe, I like to rate it on a scale of 1-10 for easiness, yumminess, and how likely I am to repeat it (10 being super easy, incredibly yummy, and extremely likely to remake it).  Here are my ratings for Strawberry Lemonade Cake:
This is how it SHOULD have looked.

Easiness---7---It requires making to separate cakes and then cutting both of those in half so that you have 4 layers. Long story short, I learned I will never enter a cake cutting contest.
Yumminess---8---It was a little bit too tart for me.  It’s fantastic, but not something I could eat a large amount of at a time.

Repeat:---10---Obviously I will remake it since I have already made it twice.


Anyway, I hope you like it as much as my family and I did!  Let me know if you have any questions about my edits to the recipe or anything else!
How MINE looked. Again, still yummy!

·         *One box of strawberry cake mix (plus oil, water and eggs as directed on box)

·         8oz. Philadelphia Cream Cheese (softened to room temp.)

·         *1 packet (0.23oz.) of Kool-Aid Lemonade

·         Yellow food coloring gel (as desired for color)

·         **2 cups Jet-Puffed Marshmallow Creme

·         8 oz. Cool Whip Topping

·         Fresh strawberries to garnish.


·         ***Make cake according to box and bake in 2- 9 inch round cake pans as directed. Turn finished cakes over on cake racks and allow to cool completely.

·         Cream together cream cheese, lemonade and yellow food coloring until smooth.

·         Mix marshmallow creme in and then mix in Cool Whip until completely smooth. Refrigerate until cake is cooled and cut.

·         Cut each cake layer in half.

·         Alternating layers of cake with layers of filling, assemble cake. End with layer of filling.

·         Top with sliced strawberries.

·         Refrigerate and serve chilled.


*The next time I make this I am going to reverse everything.  I am going to use Lemon cake mix and Strawberry Lemonade Kool-Aid instead.

**My icing turned out a bit runny, and I think it was because 2 cups of marshmallow is too much. The second time I made it I used about 1 1/2 cups and it seemed to help.

***I baked mine in 2 square pans, because I do not own round cake pans. It still turned out good!