Saturday, October 14, 2017

Pampered Chef Baking Stone Review

One of the best purchases I've ever made was the Pampered Chef Pizza Stone. I had been invited to a Pampered Chef home party back in 1998 I believe, if memory serves me correctly. After listening to and watching demonstrations on various products I knew I had to have this rectangular stone.
Mine has lasted for years and is still going strong. At the time I felt a little guilty for spending money, as we were about to buy our first home. I think my husband thought I'd lost my marbles when my stone arrived, by the look on his face. It's funny now when I think back to that time years ago as he uses the stone just as much as I do.
Not only for Pizza.
When I make prepackaged frozen fish I always grab the stone. The reason being is that I can pop it into the oven for the required bake time and not worry about having to flip or turn the fish over at the half way point. I discovered this one time when I'd forgotten to turn the fish over.
The stone is great for heating and cooking appetizers and h'orderves.
We love nachos at our house and quite often if we're making a small batch for two us the stone is perfect.
Breads baked on the stone give the bread a nice crisp crust.
Easy to Clean
Once the stone has cooled off simply run it under hot water and wipe clean. The stone I bought came with a little square scraper which works great for getting off any baked on food such as cheese.




My well used Pampered Chef Heritage Pizza Stone
© 2013 Susan Zutautas

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Grilling on a George Foreman Grill

By Len Rizzi 
I like mine with lettuce and tomato, Heinz 57 and French fried potatoes. Does that song get your mouth watering for a big juicy hamburger? For me every time I hear this Jimmy Buffet song I long to run out to Burger King, Wendy’s or McDonalds. But then I think no it is just not the healthy choice.


The Healthier Choice

Hamburgers fried or barbecued are good, but lately the best way I like them cooked is Foremanized. You may be wondering what the heck foremanized is. Cooking on a George Foreman Grill of course. With this method of cooking I get to eat a hamburger, do not have to worry as much about the fat content, therefore feeling less guilty about eating a burger, and I can see all that grease escape and collect in the handy dandy grease catchers under the grill.

Best Things About Using This Grill

  • The taste is great.
  • Food cooks faster than in the frying pan or on the barbecue.
  • I can use it all year round right on the kitchen counter.
  • No more treading through the snow in the winter to brush off the barbecue.

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 8 min
Ready in: 18 min
Yields: Serves 4 people

Not Just For Hamburgers

I use my George Foreman grill quite a bit for other foods as well. Steaks, pork chops, lamb chops, shrimp and vegetables. The list is endless to what you can make on these grills.
One of my favorite things to cook on this grill would be vegetables.
Grilled Vegetables Ingredients
  • 1 large onion sliced thick
  • 1 large green pepper cut in chunks
  • 1 large red pepper cut in chunks
  • 6 mushrooms sliced thick
  • 1 zucchini sliced thick
  • 2 or 3 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • Slap Ya Mama or any type of seasoning you prefer

Instructions

  1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl making sure everything is covered with the oil.
  2. Heat your grill, then place contents of the bowl on the grill and close and cook for about 6-8 minutes.
I use my grill so often that I have taped on the inside of one of my kitchen cabinet door a chart, like the one shown here. One day while my step-sister was visiting she saw the chart taped there and said to me "Who's George, is that the person you bought the house from". My reply was no just me being organised, it's for my George Foreman grill.

Cooking Chart

FOOD COOKED AT 360F DEGREES
WEIGHT
TIME
Burgers 3/4" Thick
4 ounces
8 minutes
Burgers 1" Thick
8 ounces
10 minutes
Frozen Burgers 3/4" Thick
4 ounces
12 minutes
Frozen Burgers 1" Thick`
8 ounces
15 minutes
Chicken Breast
Boneless
9 minutes
Chicken Breast
With Bone
23 minutes
Frozen Chicken Breast
Boneless
13 minutes
Sausages 1/2" Thick
7 minutes
400 DegreesF
Fahita Beef
Sliced Thin
2 minutes
T-Bone Steak 3/4" Thick
12 ounces
4 - 5 minutes
You can find many of these charts online or in the booklet that comes with the grill


Potato Peel Antitoxins Health Benefits


The Healthy Side

Many people do not realize the health values of potato peels. There are many vitamins nutrients, fiber and antitoxins in the skin that people tend to peel and throw away. Eating the peel can help with the protection against cancer and heart disease.
Vitamins in the peel
Vitamins and minerals that are in potatoes as well as potato skins are vitamin C and B6, potassium, manganese and copper. When leaving the skin on the potato when cooking it you are keeping the nutrients in the potato itself.

Save Time

When I prepare mashed potatoes I always scrub the potatoes really well and very rarely do I ever peel them. A great benefit of doing this other than the healthy aspect of it is that you save so much time. The peel mashes up just as well as the actual potato. When adding to soups and stews I chop them up just like any other vegetable leaving the peels on.
Healthy Fries
There are so many ways in which you can prepare potatoes to enjoy them and reap the healthy benefits. French fries and baked potatoes loaded with butter and sour cream do not fall under the healthy way in which to eat this vegetable. Whenever I crave French fries I use the following recipe.

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 30 min
Ready in: 45 min
Yields: Five people

Ingredients For Oven Fries

  • 4 Large potatoes (do not peel)
  • 8 cups ice water
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp white pepper (optional)
  • ¼ tsp allspice
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Instructions

  1. Scrub potatoes and cut into ½” strips. Place the strips into a large bowl with your ice water, cover, and chill for about an hour.
  2. Preheat oven to 475 F Remove the strips and dry well with paper towels.
  3. Put all the spices into a plastic bag and shake to mix. Put potato strips into a bowl and coat with oil. Add the potatoes to the plastic bag with the spices and shake to make sure that the strips are well coated.
  4. Place on a non-stick shallow pan and cover with foil and cook for 15 minutes.
  5. Remove foil and turn strips over, then continue to bake for another 15 – 20 minutes.





© 2010 Susan Zutautas

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Gourmet Garlic Grater Review



Anyone that uses garlic will absolutely love this Garlic Grater Gourmet Tool. It not only peels your garlic with such little effort but it also grates and purees the garlic into a smooth paste. Spread the grated garlic right onto bread to make delicious garlic bread. This three-piece tool is easy to clean and is dishwasher safe.
Set consists of one ceramic 5 1/4" round plate, silicone garlic peeler and a kitchen brush.

Other Useful Uses
  • Grate ginger the same way in which you used this tool for the garlic.
  • Have this tool sitting right on your table to grate Parmesan cheese onto a salad or your favorite pasta dish.
  • Next time you need lemon or orange zest get out your Grate Gourmet tool.
  • Chocolate nuts and hard spices are very easily grated.
  • Drizzle a freshly grated strawberry over some ice cream.
  • Add fresh grated nutmeg right into eggnog.
  • If you are making soups and stews or any sauces, marinades or dips that require garlic or ginger and you want that wonderful flavor to stand out in the dish try grate your ginger or garlic and brush right into the pot.
  • Just think how wonderful your next steak will taste using grated fresh garlic.
  • Add grated garlic right into mashed potatoes.
  • Make fresh salad dressing and add fresh garlic, ginger.

How to simply peel garlic cloves

Put the garlic clove in the silicone cylinder and press down on the peeler while rolling along your counter. The peel will quite easily be removed.
Holding the root end of the garlic grate along the plate. Once grated take the brush and brush off the plate.
Use the same method for grating ginger, chocolate, lemon peel, strawberries, nuts, hard cheeses and more.
Here I've grated one large garlic clove to be used in a recipe I'm making.




Monday, September 11, 2017

Cheesy Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

When I first went on my low carb diet I made mashed cauliflower one day and my family absolutely loved it. They said that it was better than having mashed potatoes. Last night I switched up the recipe a bit and it was all gobbled up before my eyes. 


Ready to Eat
Ingredients
Grated Garlic
  • 1 large head of cauliflower
  • 1/4 cup of shredded white cheddar cheese (doesn't have to be white)
  • 1/4 cup of shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1 very large clove of garlic grated into a paste
  • 1/8 cup of cream (I used 1/2 & 1/2 10% cream)
  • pepper to taste

Instructions
  1. Start by cutting the cauliflower into small flowerettes and place in a large pot with water. Boil until cauliflower is cooked and soft.
  2. While the cauliflower is cooking shred the cheese and grate the garlic.
  3. Mash the cauliflower and add the grated cheese stirring well.
  4. Add the grated garlic stirring again.
  5. Next comes the cream. Be sure to stir.
  6. Add the ground pepper.
  7. Serve and ENJOY!

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Shrimp and Mushroom Fettuccine

This scrumptious dish was made using an alfredo sauce from Sam's Place. He has the best recipes and they're so easy to follow.

Shrimp and Mushroom Fettuccine 
While following +Eugene Monaco's Alfredo sauce recipe in one non stick pot, I heated olive oil and a tbs. of butter in a frying pan for the sliced mushrooms and shrimp. To start with I sauted the mushrooms until done. Removing the mushrooms and putting them on a plate, I added the shrimp to the frying pan and cooked until pink. Please note this only takes a few minutes.

While the sauce, mushrooms, and shrimp were cooking I boiled fresh fettuccine pasta in my pasta pot.

Once everything was ready I mixed the alfredo sauce with the pasta, added mushrooms, and plated it, topping it off with the shrimp.

Voila a new family favorite recipe.


Monday, August 21, 2017

Easy Potato Salad


Everyone has their own way of making potato salad whether it has mayo or sour cream or both.  Some people prefer Hellmann's and some prefer Miracle Whip. We're a Hellman's type of family. 

I've had a few people ask me for my recipe lately and to be quite honest with you I just make the salad without thinking much about it. For decades now I pretty much make it the same way or close to it depending what I have on hand. 

Ingredients 

  • 7 - 8 potatoes washed, boiled and cut into bite sized pieces
  • 5 -6 hard boiled eggs peeled and chopped (Save 1-2 for garnish)
  • 1/2 of a green pepper chopped
  • 4 -5 green onions chopped
  • 2 - 3 radishes chopped
  • garlic powder
  • celery seed salt
  • paprika 
  • ground pepper
  • 1 TBS of yellow mustard
  • 1 TBS of green sweet relish
  • Hellmann's or Miracle Whip if you prefer


I don't measure out the spices so just make to your taste but don't be stingy.

Instructions 
  1. I boil my potatoes till they are fork tender. Be careful not to overcook.
  2. While the potatoes are cooking I prepare the green pepper, onion, and radishes.
  3. Once the potatoes are cooked and have cooled off enough to handle I cut them into bite sized pieces. Most times I will leave the peel off but that's just me. If you must, remove the skin. do so before chopping.
  4. In a large bowl add the chopped potatoes along with the green pepper, onion, and radishes and toss.
  5. Next add your spices tossing again.
  6. Next comes the chopped eggs, yellow mustard, relish and Hellmann's. I add the Hellmann's without measuring. Add what you feel you'd like. 
  7. Give everything a really good gentle toss, add more paprika to the top along with a sliced hard boiled egg or two. 
  8. Serve and ENJOY!











Monday, July 31, 2017

Broccoli and Bacon Salad



I'm always looking for new salads to make and this is my newest one.

Ingredients Needed

  • 6 slices of bacon cooked crispy and broken into bite sized pieces 
  • 2 heads of broccoli cut into small florets 
  • 1/2 of a large red onion chopped (sweet onions would work great too)
  • 4 large radishes sliced
  • 1/2 cup of Hellman's mayonnaise 
  • 1/3rd cup of sugar
  • 3 tablespoons of red wine vinegar


Directions

  1. To a large bowl add the broccoli, red onion, radishes, sunflower seeds, and bacon and toss.
  2. In a small bowl combine the mayonnaise, sugar, and red wine vinegar. Whisk until mixed really well.
  3. Add the dressing to the salad and toss.
  4. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. 
  5. Serve and ENJOY!

For more Broccoli salad recipes by yours truly, please follow the links. Have a wonderful day!








Monday, July 3, 2017

Flatbread With Pesto, Veggies, and Gouda Cheese

Whenever I go out to a restaurant that has flatbread on the menu I usually order it as an appetizer. I'm addicted to it. Because I like it so much I decided to make some at home.

I'm proud to say that it came out delicious! Next time I'll have to make more as it disappeared quite quickly.




Ingredients

  • 2 Naan Flatbreads
  • 1/2 red pepper chopped
  • 1/2 yellow pepper chopped
  • 1/2 sweet onion chopped
  • 6 mushrooms sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves sliced
  • Gouda cheese (or cheese of your choice) grated about a cup
  • 3 green onions chopped
  • Pesto sauce
  • Olive oil


Instructions

  1. In a small pan add just enough olive oil to coat the pan.
  2. Over medium heat add the chopped sweet onions and cook about 4 min.
  3. To the pan add the sliced garlic, then the chopped peppers, and finally the

    mushrooms
  4. You just want to cook the veggies long enough to soften them a bit
  5. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
  6. Place the Naan bread on a cookie sheet and lightly brush with olive oil
  7. Next spread a thin layer of pesto sauce onto the bread
  8. Next comes the cooked veggies
  9. Top with your grated cheese and pop into the oven
  10. Cook until the cheese is all melted
  11. Remove from the oven, top with green onions, and let sit 5 min. before slicing
  12. Serve and ENJOY!







Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Pork Chops Baked in Tomatoes, Peppers, and Onions

Pork Chops Baked in Tomatoes, Peppers, and Onions

A delicious combination of pork, tomatoes, peppers, onions, and spices baked to satisfy your taste buds. 

Ingredients 
  • 5-6 pork chops
  • 2 large onions sliced thick
  • 1 can of either diced or whole tomatoes
  • 1 large green pepper cut into chunks
  • Garlic powder
  • Italian spices

Directions 
  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees fahrenheit
  2. Spray a large oven safe dish with cooking spray
  3. Place the onions in the bottom of the pan
  4. Next lay the pork chops on top of the onion slices
  5. Generously sprinkle the chops with garlic powder and then the Italian spices  
  6. Cover with the diced tomatoes including the juice
  7. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for one hour
  8. Remove the foil and add your peppers continuing to bake for another 30 minutes
  9. Remove from the oven, serve and ENJOY!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Lithuanian Raisin Coffee Cake


Traditional Lithuanian Baking

My husbands father is from Lithuania, and I've always been interested in cooking the delicious desserts, potato dishes, soups, and appetizers that his grandmother makes. This particular recipe for Lithuanian Raisin Coffee Cake comes from her, and is one that I'll pass down to my sons and their wives.
  • Prep time: 30 min
  • Cook time: 30 min
  • Ready in: 1 hour
  • Yields: 10 people


Ingredients

  • 3 cups of all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. of baking powder
  • 1 tsp. of baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. of salt
  • 1 cup of butter
  • 1 1/4 cups of white granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp. of cooled brewed coffee
  • 1 Tsp. of vanilla
  • 2 cups of sour cream (I use 14%)
  • "Raisin Mixture"
  • 1/4 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup of granulated white sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. of cocoa powder
  • 1 Tbsp. of cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup of chopped walnuts or pecans
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 Tbsp of raisins

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven with rack in center of oven to 350° F.
  2. Grease a bundt pan.
  3. In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt mixing really well. Set aside.
  4. In a medium size mixing bowl beat together the butter and sugar.
  5. Beat in the eggs one at a time.
  6. Mix in the coffee and vanilla.
  7. Add this mixture to the flour mixture alternating with the sour cream.
  8. In a small mixing bowl mix together all the ingredients listed for raisin mixture.
  9. To the bottom of the bundt pan add about two cups of the batter. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of the raisin mixture on top of the batter.
  10. Keep doing this until almost all the batter is gone.
  11. For the top layer you want to end up with batter.
  12. Place in the oven for 50 minutes or until cake can be inserted with a toothpick coming out clean.
  13. Cool on a rack for 30 minutes.
  14. Place a plate on top of the cake and flip over allowing the cake to come out of the bundt pan and onto the plate.
  15. Slice and ENJOY!

Is this a cake that you think you may like?



Saturday, March 11, 2017

Lamb Shoulder Chops with Garlic and Rosemary



If lamb wasn't so expensive I'd probably make it once a week. Shoulder lamb chops are my preference over lamb chops because they are larger (more meat) and less expensive. When I make them I'm usually feeding 3-4 grown men with big appetites. 
Marinating the chops for a few hours before broiling or grilling them not only packs a powerful flavor but tenderizes them as well.
Lamb has been one of my favorite meats since I was a child. I find most people either like lamb or they don't. There doesn't seem to be too many people that say, I can take them or leave them.
I use a lot of garlic in this recipe due to the fact that I'm a garlic lover. If you're not, I suggest cutting back on the amount that you use in the following recipe.
Since discovering how much I enjoy rosemary with chicken I thought that I'd use it in this recipe. No one was disappointed in dinner. 
My Dad's favorite meal was lamb chops and we would always have lamb on Father's Day. 
  • Prep time: 15 min.
  • Cook time: 2 hours 30 min.
  • Ready in: 2 hours 45 min.
  • Yields: 4 people 2 chops each

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup plus 1 TBS of extra virgin olive oil
  • 20 cranks of fresh ground pepper
  • 5 large garlic cloves pressed
  • 1 TBS of dried rosemary or 1 1/2 TBS of fresh cut into 1/2 - 1" pieces
  • 8 lamb shoulder chops

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl combine the extra virgin olive oil, and fresh ground pepper.
  2. Cut your garlic cloves into several pieces and press into the bowl.
  3. Add the rosemary, and whisk everything together really well.
  4. Place the lamb into a marinating dish and add the marinade onto each chop.
  5. With the back of a spoon rub the marinade into the chops.
  6. Cover and refrigerate until ready to broil.
  7. Preheat your oven on broil and place the oven rack on the second rung from the top.
  8. Place the chops on a broiler pan and pop into the oven.
  9. Cook until the chops are either rare with an internal temperature of 135 degrees, medium 140 - 150, or well done at 165.
  10. Remove from the oven, serve and ENJOY.

Do you like lamb?

Friday, January 20, 2017

Cheesy Chicken Breasts Baked With Veggies


If you're looking for a new way to cook chicken breasts have I got a delicious new recipe for you.

Ingredients

  • 1 large sweet onion sliced thick
  • 4-5 boneless chicken breasts
  • Tomato sauce or jarred spaghetti sauce ( I used Jamie Oliver tomato pasta sauce)
  • Sliced mushrooms, enough to cover the entire dish
  • 1 - sliced red pepper
  • Monterey Jack cheese sliced
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 325
  2. Spray a large casserole dish with cooking oil
  3. Line the bottom of the casserole dish with the slices of onion
  4. Place the chicken breasts on the top of the onions
  5. Spoon the tomato sauce over the chicken breasts
  6. Next comes the sliced mushroom and red peppers
  7. Lastly the cheese
  8. Bake uncovered for one hour or until chicken breasts reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
  9. Remove from oven SERVE AND ENJOY!