Elbow Macaroni with Crispy Breadcrumbs and Broccoli

Elbow Macaroni with Crispy Breadcrumbs and Broccoli

Elbow Macaroni with Crispy Breadcrumbs and Broccoli

Delicious dinner.  That is all.

6 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling

1/2 cup breadcrumbs

zest of 1 lemon

3 cups (12 oz) elbow macaroni

4 cups chopped broccoli

1 clove garlic, minced or pressed

1 cup chicken stock

1 cup shredded parmigiano-reggiano

1  Cook pasta according to package directions.  While pasta is cooking, in a large skillet, over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons olive oil then add breadcrumbs and toast, stirring constantly, until crisp and golden, about 4 – 5 minutes.  Scrape into small bowl and set aside.

2  Wipe out skillet and return to medium high heat.  Add remaining 4 tablespoons olive oil and when oil is hot, add broccoli and toss to coat.  Saute until it turns bright green, about 2 – 3 minutes, then add garlic.  Cook until garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute, then pour in stock.  Simmer until broccoli is tender, about 5 – 6 minutes.

3  When pasta is done, scoop out with small strainer or slotted spoon and add directly to skillet, reserving pasta water.  Simmer pasta with sauce to blend flavors, 1 – 2 minutes, then drizzle with 1 tablespoon or so of olive oil and toss.  If sauce seems too dry, add 1/2 cup pasta water.

4  Remove from heat and stir in cheese.  Serve in bowls topped with toasted bread crumbs.

recipe from Food Network

Advertisements

Chocolate Topped Harry Potter Cupcakes

Chocolate Topped Harry Potter Cupcakes

Chocolate Topped Harry Potter Cupcakes

This week I got to make these adorable cupcakes for my friend Madison’s Harry Potter themed baby shower.  The cupcakes were made from this recipe and the frosting from this recipe.  I got the molds for the toppers from Amazon (here and here) and used Wilton Candy Melts from Michaels.  The scarves are all made from Wilton Fondant which I got in small packs at WalMart.  The Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans came from Zurchers.

Chocolate Topped Harry Potter Cupcakes

Chocolate Topped Harry Potter Cupcakes

And now for a closer look

Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans, a quill, a Ravenclaw scarf and a wizard's hat

Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans, a quill, a Ravenclaw scarf and a wizard’s hat

a Slytherin scarf, Harry Potter glasses, Hedwig and a broomstick

a Slytherin scarf, Harry Potter glasses, Hedwig and a broomstick

wizard's hat, Scabbers the rat, Hufflepuff scarf and a chocolate frog

wizard’s hat, Scabbers the rat, Hufflepuff scarf and a chocolate frog

Gryffindor scarf, witches hat, Hedwig and Ravenclaw scarf

Gryffindor scarf, witches hat, Hedwig and Ravenclaw scarf

Hufflepuff scarf, lightening bolt, broomstick and Ravenclaw scarf

Hufflepuff scarf, lightening bolt, broomstick and Ravenclaw scarf

Thanks for letting me be a part of the fun Madison and Kelly!

Strawberry Freezer Jam

Strawberry Freezer Jam

Strawberry Freezer Jam

I used to make this all the time when the kids were little and then just fell out of the habit so this year after much begging from the family I decided to give it a go again.  I forgot how easy it is to make!  Plus a grocery store near me had strawberries on sale for $7 a flat which is about 8 pounds of strawberries.

3 1/4 cups crushed strawberries (I run mine through the food processor)

1/4 cup lemon juice

4 1/2 cups sugar

1 box MCP Premium Fruit Pectin by Sure Jell

1  Mix strawberries and lemon juice together in a large bowl.

2  Stir in box of pectin and mix thoroughly.  Set aside and stir every 5 minutes for 30 minutes to dissolve pectin completely.

3  After the 30 minutes, stir in sugar gradually.  Keep stirring until sugar is dissolved and no longer grainy.

4  Pour into containers and cover.  Let stand at room temperature for 24 hours or until set.

Can be kept in fridge for 3 weeks or freezer for 1 year.

 

I bought 2 flats of strawberries, about 16 pounds and ended up with this

Strawberry Freezer Jam

Strawberry Freezer Jam

recipe from box of MCP Premium Fruit Pectin by Sure Jell

Healthy No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Healthy No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Healthy No Bake Chocolate Peanut Cookies

Another gluten free treat for my gluten intolerant missionary friend, they were quite tasty!

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

1/4 cup honey or maple syrup

1/4 cup coconut oil, measured in solid state

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup quick cooking oats

1/4 cup shredded coconut

1  Line a cookie sheet with wax paper.

2  Heat peanut butter, honey, salt and coconut oil over low – medium heat, stirring continuously, until melted and combined.  Stir in vanilla and cocoa, then add oats and coconut, stirring to combine.

3  Drop by 1 tablespoon onto prepared baking sheet.

4  Put in fridge or freezer until hardened.

recipe from Joy Food Sunshine

No Bake Peanut Butter Bars

No Bake Peanut Butter Bars

No Bake Peanut Butter Bars

I spent the other day putting together missionary packages for some friends of mine who are serving missions for our church and one of them is gluten intolerant so I searched for some gluten free recipes on Pinterest and this is one of the first that popped up and it was delicious!

1 1/2 cups brown sugar

1 3/4 cup powdered sugar

10 tablespoons butter, softened, divided

1 1/2 cups peanut butter, creamy or crunchy

1 cup chocolate chips, milk or semi sweet

1  Lightly spray bottom only of 8 x 8″ or 9 x 9″ pan with cooking spray.

2  Beat together 5 tablespoons of butter, brown sugar and powdered sugar until smooth.  Beat in peanut butter until smooth.  Press into bottom of prepared pan.

3  Melt chocolate chips and remaining 5 tablespoons of butter in microwave for 1 minute.  Stir and continue to microwave in 30 second increments until melted and smooth.  Pour over peanut butter layer and spread evenly.

4  Chill until firm, about 3 hours or overnight.

recipe from Culinary Hill

Magic Cookie Bars

Magic Cookie Bars

Magic Cookie Bars

I was kind of surprised that these weren’t already on the blog.  My mom used to make these when I was a kid and then I made them for my kids but I guess I haven’t made them in awhile.  They really are magic!

1/2 cup butter, melted

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs

2 cups chocolate chips

1 cup walnuts, chopped

1 1/3 cups flaked coconut

1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk

1  Heat oven to 350.

2  Pour melted butter into a 9 x 13″ pan and tilt pan to cover bottom with butter.  Sprinkle with graham cracker crumbs to cover bottom of pan then press down lightly with hand or back of spatula.

3  Sprinkle chocolate chips, nuts and coconut over graham cracker crumbs.  Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over top.

4  Bake 25 – 30 minutes or until lightly browned.

(This is how I remember making them, it was fun to read the original recipe and see how it varies from the way my mom did it.)

recipe from Eagle Brand

 

Damn Good Chocolate Bundt Cake

Damn Good Chocolate Bundt Cake

Damn Good Chocolate Bundt Cake

First off I want to say that I did not name this cake and second the title is totally true!  It was the hub’s birthday yesterday and he requested a really good chocolate cake and this delivered!

cake

1 box chocolate fudge cake mix

1 small box instant chocolate pudding mix

4 eggs

1/2 cup oil

1/2 cup buttermilk

1 cup sour cream

ganache

3/4 cup heavy whipping cream

1 – 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

mini chocolate chips for garnish

1  Preheat oven to 350.  Spray bundt pan with cooking spray for baking (the one with flour in it).

2  Beat cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, oil, buttermilk, and sour cream on medium – low for 2 minutes or until combined and smooth.  Pour into prepared pan and smooth out.

3  Bake 45 – 55 minutes or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean.  Cool 10 – 15 minutes before inverting onto serving platter and then cool completely before pouring on ganache.

4  Microwave cream and chocolate chips for 1 minute then stir, repeat at 30 second intervals in microwave as needed until melted and smooth.  Allow to set for about 15 minutes before sprinkling with chocolate chips.

recipe from The Domestic Rebel