Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Monkey Bread

This dessert was soooo good.  I've had it at Potluck's before, but never made it myself.  Who knew it was SO EASY to make??   I didn't have a bundt cake pan and used the one below instead.  I wouldn't recommend that.   The top cooked well, but the bottom layers were still gooey.  The butter mixture also overflowed into my oven causing a big mess.  I'm sure if I had used the correct pan, that wouldn't have happened. 
3 cans of biscuits (I only used to because of my smaller pan)
1 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
2 tsp Cinnamon
1 Cup melted Butter

Cut biscuits into four pieces.  Place sugars and cinnamon in a bowl or bag and drop in biscuits and coat them with the mixture, then place in greased bundt cake pan.  Reserve 1/2 Cup of Sugar mixture.   Melt Butter and pour in main Sugar/Cinnamon mixture, mix well.    Pour over biscuit pieces.   Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 Cup Sugar Mixture on top of biscuits.   Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.   Wait 10-15 minutes before taking out of pan.  Serve warm. 

Monday, August 29, 2011

Stuffed Pork Chops

This is an old family favorite and I was so excited when I realized all the ingredients were IC-Friendly.  That never happens, yipee!!!
6, 1-inch thick Pork Chops (with a pocket cut in them... the butcher can do this for you if you want)
3/4 package of white bread (I use Nature's Own brand)
2 Eggs
1/4 Cup melted Butter
1 tsp Poultry Seasoning
1 tsp Onion Salt (careful, could be a trigger for some)
1 Tbsp Parsley Flakes
Salt & Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350.   Tear the bread into small pieces.   Add all the seasonings to the bread.   Pour egg and melted butter over bread and mix well.    Stuff the pork chops generously with the stuffing.   Put pork chops in a greased baking dish.   Cook 45 minutes uncovered or until done.  

Served 6. 

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

This recipe is all over the internet and plenty of IC-ers use it.  I finally decided to try it and it was really good.   There are a few variations.   I tried this one that adds cream & cheese.   I tasted it before adding the cream and it definitely had more of a red pepper punch without it.   However, as a sauce used for pasta... I think adding the cream and cheese was just perfect!
4 roasted red bell peppers, chopped
1/4 cup pine nuts, divided
1/2 medium onion, finely diced
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1/2 cup fresh basil
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup organic cream (sub half and half or whole milk as desired)
1/4 cup grated cheese (Parmeson preferred, but if it bothers your bladder, use shredded Mozerella)
3 tablespoons butter
salt and pepper to taste

In a large sauce pan, saute olive oil and onions over medium heat until softened.  Add the garlic, roasted bell peppers and basil and continue cooking over medium heat for 10 minutes to allow flavors to blend.  While the pepper mixture is cooking, lightly toast the pine nuts in a skillet for 5 - 7 minutes over medium high heat (stir frequently to prevent burning).  Remove the pine nuts from the heat and set aside to cool.  Place red pepper mixture and the toasted pine nuts in a blender and puree to desired consistency.  Return puree to sauce pan and reheat until it begins to bubble.  Stir in the cream and the cheese cooking until the cheese melts.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Simmer for 5 minutes

How to Roast your own Bell Peppers:
Broil red bell peppers on a sheet pan in the oven.  The bell peppers need to be within 2 inches of the broiler to achieve proper charring.  Broil until the surface of the peppers bubble and then turn black, about 15 minutes.  After the peppers are done roasting, place in a sealed plastic baggie so they can steam, making skin removal easier.  After 5-10 minutes, you should be able to remove the skin from the peppers quite easily.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Golden Oreo Cheesecake

One of my biggest struggles with having IC is going to other peoples houses for dinner.  Not being in control of the food and trying to explain to other people what you can't eat is embarrassing and frustrating.   Many people don't understand or care to consider my limitations.   The IC diet is a lifestyle with one goal... to be pain free!  Luckily I have a wonderful friend, Lori, that recently had a BBQ and made a delicious spread of all IC Friendly food just for me!!   I am so thankful for her.   Not only did I not feel left out for once... I ate a fantastic feast and had tons of fun not having to worry about tomorrow.  This was the cheesecake she made... to die for!  And I got to take home leftovers!
24 Golden Oreo Cookies.  (She used the entire package.   She evenly divided the "extra" Oreos between the three areas where you use them- crust, in cake, and on cake)
3 Tbsp Butter, melted
3 (250g) Packages PHILADELPHIA Brick Cream Cheese, softened (That's roughly 3.5 bricks)
3/4 Cup Sugar
1 Tsp Vanilla
3 Eggs

Heat oven to 350.  Place 16 of the cookies in a resealable plastic bag.  Flatten bag to remove excess air, then seal bag.  Finely crush cookies by rolling a rolling pin across the bag.  Place in bowl.  Add butter, mix well.  Press firmly onto bottom of  a 9 inch springform pan. 

Beat Cream Cheese, Sugar, Vanilla in a large bowl with electric mixer on medium until well blended.  Add egg 1 at a time, beating until just blended after each addition.  Chop or crush remaining 8 cookies.  Gently stir half of the chopped cookies into cream cheese batter.  Pour over prepared crust, sprinkle with remaining chopped cookies. 

Bake 45 minutes or until center is almost set.  Cool.  Refrigerate 3 hours or overnight.  Cut into 12 pieces.  Store leftover cheesecake in refrigerator.


Friday, August 19, 2011

Zucchini Butternut Squash Lasagna

I found this recipe here on another IC Food Blog.  After trying and loving the Butternut Squash Sauce I made a couple weeks ago, this recipe didn't seem as scarey to me.   It was pretty yummy and not that hard to make for a lasagna.  I also made extra sauce and froze to make a quick pasta meal on my lazy cooking days.  Love the butternut squash sauce!!!
1 medium butternut squash
2 medium zucchini sliced in halve lengthwise and chopped into 1/2 cm slices
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 1/2 cups cottage cheese
3 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons dried sage
2 cups Mozzerella
1 box lasagna noodles
sprinkle rosemary
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the lasagna noodles per package instructions. 

Cut the squash in half and remove the seeds.  Place cut side down in a 9x13 pan with one cup of water in it.  Bake at 450 degrees for about 45 minutes.   The skin should appear browned and puckered away from the flesh.   After it is done baking remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes. Using a spoon remove the flesh from the skins and puree in the food processor or blender.  (I bought pre-cut cubes and cooked the same way, but for only 30 minutes).

While the squash is cooking slice the zucchini in half and slice into 1/2 cm slices.  In a medium bowl salt them and add the olive oil.  Add one minced clove of garlic.  You can add pepper too if you eat it.   It is important to salt the zucchini early because it will help to get the extra moisture out of the zucchini so that it won't be too we in the lasagna.

Add the cottage cheese, sage, 2 cloves garlic, and salt & pepper to taste to the squash.

Layer as follows:  Lasagna, zucchini, squash, mozzarella.... Lasagna, zucchini, squash, mozzarella... ect until done (I made 5 layers).  Sprinkle rosemary on top.    Bake at 350 for 30-45 minutes.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Spiced Pears

Simple but yummy.  A true comfort food.    I had it as a side, but would be delicious over some cold vanilla ice cream as a dessert. 
Pears (I used canned for convenience)

Preheat oven to 350.   In a small casserole dish add pears.  Drizzle honey over and pears and sprinkle generously with Cinnamon.   Cook about 20 minutes until hot and juices bubble.  

Pan Fried Chicken w/ Garlic Cream Cheese Sauce

This chicken is very versatile and can be tailored to your taste depending on what spices you use to season the breadcrumbs.  I also dipped this chicken in my leftover garlic cream cheese sauce from last nights dish found here.   
2 Boneless Chicken Breasts, flattened
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Egg
Unseasoned Breadcrumbs
1/2 tsp Dill
1/2 tsp Lemon Peel
1/2 tsp Thyme

Get 3 bowls.  Fill 1st with flour, 2nd with Egg, 3rd with Breadcrumbs and seasonings.   Dip the chicken in bowl #1, then #2, then #3 making sure fully coated in each.    Heat Olive Oil in pan.  Add the chicken to the pan.  Cook until no longer pink in the middle trying not to turn very many times (in order to make sure the breadcrumbs don't fall off and turn crispy) about 10-15 minutes depending on thickness of the chicken.

Garlic Cream Cheese Sauce:  (I halved the original recipe)
1/2 Tbsp Butter
4 oz cream cheese (Philadelphia Brand, in a brick)
1/ 4 Cup Milk
1 Clove Garlic
1 tsp Chives

Melt butter over medium heat.  Cook the garlic in butter about 1 minute, stirring occasionally.   Reduce heat and add cream cheese and milk.  Cook 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly or sauce will scorch, until smooth and hot.  Stir in chives.   Serve over chicken or as a dipping sauce. 

Sesame Pork with Garlic and Butter Cream Sauce

I found this recipe on another IC'ers food blog here.   This was really easy to make and the sauce had a really good strong flavor, just how I like it!!   I had some leftover sauce and plan to try it on chicken in the next couple of days.  
2-4 Pork Chops
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1/4 Cup Sesame Seeds
Cream Cheese Sauce
Salt & Pepper to taste

Set oven to Broil.  Brush oil and sprinkle Salt & Pepper on both sides of pork and place on rock in broiler pan.   Sprinkle half with Sesame Seed.  Broil Pork 4-6 inches from heat for 6 minutes. Flip over and sprinkle with remaining Sesame Seed and broil for 6 more minutes until pork is no longer pink in center.   Serve cream cheese sauce over Pork.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Maple Glazed Carrots

I had some leftover carrots after making my Mediterranean Vegetable Pasta so I tried this recipe as a side with my Creamy Mushroom Chicken.   The hubs and I ate them up... so yummy and a breeze to make!
2 Cup Carrots
1/8 cup Maple Syrup
1/3 Cup Water
1 Tbsp Butter
Salt to taste

In a skillet, combine ingredients.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer until carrots are tender and liquid has reduced to a glaze, about 12-15 minutes.  If carrots are tender before liquid has thickened, uncover, increase heat to medium-high, and cook until liquid forms a glaze.

Creamy Mushroom Chicken

I stepped out of my cooking comfort zone again and am rather proud of myself.   I'm normally shy about mushrooms... something about their texture makes me shiver.  But again, with so many limitations decided to give this dish a try...and I'm glad I did.  It was good!  I chopped the mushrooms up really fine so their texture wouldn't be an issue.  From there it was all mind over matter.   Turns out mushrooms add a very unique & yummy taste!!  Although, it doesn't photograph well... sorry.
2 Boneless Chicken Breasts
1 package chopped mushrooms
1/2 White Onion, diced
1 tsp Dried Basil
1 tsp Dried Thyme
1 Clove Garlic
1 Cup Chicken Stock
2 1/2 Tbsp Flour
1/2 Cup Milk
Salt to taste

Coat the chicken in 1 Tbsp Flour.  Sear the chicken in large sauce pan.  Add in the Onions, Mushrooms, Garlic, let fry for a few minutes until onions are soft.   Add in one cup Chicken Stock, Basil, and Thyme.   Let it all cook for about 10 minutes on low/med heat.  Remove chicken to a plate.  Add remaining Flour 1 1/2 Tbsp and whisk (like you would for gravy).   Add in the milk and whisk until smooth.  Put chicken back in and heat through.

Serves 2

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Cheesecake with Blueberry Topping

I love cheesecake and this cheesecake was great, but then add the blueberry topping and it is to die for!!
For Crust-
1 1/4 Cups Graham Cracker Crumbs
1/4 Cup Sugar
1/3 Cup Melted Butter

For Filling-  (I halved this b/c I make my cheesecake in a pie dish)
4 (8 ounce packages cream cheese softened)
1 (14-ounce) can Eagle Branc Sweetened Condensed Milk (Not Evaporated Milk)
4 Eggs
1/3 cup Flour
1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
1/2 Tsp Lemon Peel

Preheat Oven to 300 Degrees.  Combine Crumbs, Sugar, and Butter; press firmly onto bottom of 8 or 9 inch springform pan (Again, I used a pie dish).   In large mixer bowl, beat cream cheese until fluffy.  Gradually beat in condensed milk until smooth.   Add eggs, flour, vanilla, and lemon peel and mix well.   Pour into prepared pan.  Bake 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes.   Cool and chill.    Add Blueberry Sauce before serving.  Keep refreigerated.

Blueberry Sauce:

1 Cup Water
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 Tbsp Cornstarch
1/2 Tsp Cinnamon
1/8 Tsp Ground Nutmeg
2 Cups Blueberries

In saucepan, combine Sugar, cornstarch, Cinnamon, and Nutmeg.  Gradually add water.  Cook & Stir until thickened.  Stir in Blueberries.  Stir until bubbly and Blueberries burst.  Makes about 1 2/3 Cups.

Cheesy Spinach Burgers

Flavorful burgers for hosting an IC-Friendly a cookout!

1lb Ground Beef
1 Cup Fresh Spinach Leaves (minus the stems), chopped
1/2 Cup White (or green, if it's easier for your bladder) Onion, finely sliced
1/2 Cup Dried Bread Crumbs
3 Tbsp Plain Cream Cheese
1/3 Cup Feta Cheese
1 Tbsp Dried Basil
1/4 Tsp Kosher Salt
1/8 Tsp Black Pepper
White American Cheese Slices
Hamburger Buns

Mix all ingredients in a large mixing bowl.  Stir until a fairly uniformed mixture appears.   Form into 4-5 patties (depending on how big of a burger you want).   Cook burgers on grill or stove top about 10-15 minutes.  Top with American Cheese and Hamburger Buns.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

IC Alternative to PB&J... AB&B

Sigh.  I sure miss my PB&J's and today I just couldn't take it anymore... so I came up with this alternative.  It definitely cured my hankering!!    I buy my Almond Butter & Blueberry Jam online here because I haven't found a friendly Blueberry Jam in my area and don't like the Almond Butter from Wal-Mart.  The one I get is better than peanut butter... yes, I said it... and so much healthier for you anyways.

Nature's Own Thin Siced Bagel, plain (or regular sandwich bread would work)
Zinke Orchards Almond Butter
Blueberry Jam

Toast the bagel.   Spread Almond Butter & Blueberry Jam on top.   Enjoy!!!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Roasted Potato Medley

Although I fell in love with my Scalloped Potato recipe, I decided to give this one a try because everyone needs at least 2 good potato recipes... probably more.   This one called for Tarragon, which is IC Friendly, and I had never cooked with it before.   It was delicious!!!  We had it as a side to steaks along with green beans.   Was a fulfilling meal all around!
1 Sweet Potato
1 Yukon Gold Potato
Olive Oil
Dried Tarragon
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper (if you can tolerate)

Preheat oven to 425.  Peel and cube potatoes.   Boil potatoes on stove for 3 minutes, drain thoroughly.  Spread the potatoes in a single layer on a large nonstick baking sheet (I placed aluminum foil down first for easier clean up).   Drizzle the potatoes with olive oil and sprinkle with tarragon, salt, and pepper.  roast the potatoes until browned and crisp, about 25 minutes.  Serve immediately.

Serves 2