Monday, August 18, 2014

Slow Cooker Snickerdoodle Ice Cream Bread


Ice Cream bread.  As good as it sounds.  Perfect for using up those small amounts of ice cream in your freezer.  My choice was using up the last of the Snickerdoodle ice cream.  In deciding how to flavor this bread up, I remembered a cookie recipe for Snickerdoodles using cardamom and a little brown sugar.  Wow - I can still remember the aroma as they baked  - intoxicating. I had my spices for the bread.

This bread takes very little preparation time and fills your kitchen with a spicy aroma.  To begin, you put all ingredients - ice cream, ground cardamom, brown sugar, and flour in a large bowl.



Mix together and pour the mixture into a crock pot which has been sprayed lightly with cooking spray.  I used a round 3 1/2 quart crock pot.  Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours.   When the bread is done a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.  Turn off the crock pot and let the bread cool for about 20 minutes.  Remove to a wire rack and cool completely.



A moist, tender a flavorful bread awaits your consumption.   Enjoy:)


Slow Cooker Snickerdoodle Ice Cream Bread
Special Equipment: Crock pot
Ingredients:


1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 cup softened Snickerdoodle ice cream

Directions:

1. Lightly spray the crock of your Crock pot.  Set aside.
2. Mix all the ingredients together in a medium bowl.
3. Pour  into the prepared crock.  Set on low and cook for 3-4 hours.
4.  Insert toothpick in middle to test for doneness.  Let cool about 20 minutes then remove from crock to a wire rack.  Let cool completely before slicing.

Makes 1 loaf








Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Lavender-Mint Syrup


I love lavender and I love mint.  What a perfect combination for a syrup.   A perfect syrup to flavor, tea, lemonade, seltzer water  - endless possibilities.

In this recipe, you need 1 cup of mint leaves.  I used a combination of sweet mint and chocolate mint from my garden.  You can use whatever mint you have available - the syrup will be delicious.  Next I  got some lavender from the spice cabinet and put the lavender and mint in a saucepan with equal parts of water and sugar.  The mixture was brought to a boil and then boiled for two minutes.  Remove from the stove, strain and let the syrup cool.

I flavored a glass of white iced tea with the syrup.  It was delicious.  The syrup definitely kicked the flavor of the tea up several notches.  Later in the evening, I used it in some herbal tea and again I enjoyed a wonderful tasting cup of tea.


Lavender-Mint Syrup
From  My Recipes


Ingredients:
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
1 cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves
1 tablespoon dried lavender buds

Directions:
Bring sugar, water, mint leaves, and dried lavender buds to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring just until sugar dissolves. Boil 2 minutes. (Do not stir.) Remove from heat. Press through a wire-mesh strainer into a bowl, using back of a spoon to squeeze out liquid; discard solids. Cool completely (about 30 minutes). Transfer to a jar; cover and refrigerate up to 3 months.


Friday, August 8, 2014

Slow Cooker Peach Cobbler



A friend gave me some fresh peaches the other day.  After eating a fair share of them, I decided to make a cobbler out of the rest.   For those of you who follow my Blog  know I have been doing a lot of cooking with my crock pot.  Today's recipe is no exception.

Making this recipe is super easy.  The hardest part is peeling and slicing the peaches.  Once you have your peaches sliced, you toss them with some sugar.  I put in a pinch of cinnamon, too.  Next, you put your peaches in your crock pot that has been lightly sprayed with cooking spray.   Now it is time to make the biscuit topping.  All you need is some Bisquick, sugar, and milk.  Mix them together and pour on top of the peaches.




Cover and cook on low for about 3 hours.





Your cobbler is ready to serve.  You can serve with some ice cream or whipped cream if you wish.
Be prepared to enjoy one of the Best cobblers you have ever tasted:)

Slow Cooker Peach Cobbler
From Betty Crocker

Ingredients:

4 cups fresh or frozen sliced peeled peaches
1/4 cup sugar
Pinch of cinnamon (my addition)
1 cup Original Bisquick™ mix
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup milk
Ice cream or whipped cream

Directions:
1. Spray 6-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. In large bowl, gently toss peaches and 1/4 cup of the sugar (cinnamon, if you wish). Turn into slow cooker.
2. In medium bowl, gently beat Bisquick mix, sugar and milk with whisk until blended. Pour over peaches in slow cooker.
3. Cover; cook on low heat setting 3 hours or until cobbler is set in center.
4. Serve cobbler with ice cream.





Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Slow Cooker Turkey Breast


The wonders of a Crock Pot amaze me.  Yesterday for dinner, I made  a very moist and flavorful turkey breast in my crock pot.  Yes, in my crock pot.  I was amazed how easy and how delicious it turned out.

I found this recipe on the Taste of Home website.  It is very easy and requires very little prep time.  I changed the recipe very slightly.  First, I did not remove the turkey skin.  Next after brushing the turkey with oil and rubbing it with the herbs and spices, I browned the breast in a skillet on all sides.  Next, I transferred the turkey to the slow cooker, but instead of adding water, I used white wine.  Mmm, this really made the turkey good and it smelled wonderful.   I cooked as directed and served.  I served it with my Slow Cooker Green Bean Casserole .  Good thing I have a few Crock Pots:)

This was a great meal.  It was the Families "Thanksgiving in August mini meal".  I added a little cranberry sauce and we were set.  It was enjoyed by all:)


Slow Cooker Turkey Breast

Ingredients:
1 bone-in turkey breast (6 to 7 pounds), skin removed ( I left mine on)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon dried minced garlic
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup water (used white wine)

Directions:

Brush turkey with oil. Combine the garlic, seasoned salt, paprika,
Italian seasoning and pepper; rub over turkey. Transfer to a 6-qt.
slow cooker; add water. Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or until
tender.

Yield: 14 servings








Monday, August 4, 2014

Slow Cooker Green Bean Casserole


I never knew how much I would come to love a my Crock pot.  I never realized I would be able to make my favorite Green Bean Casserole in a Crock pot and have it turn out so delicious.

In this recipe from Rachel Ray, you make your own cream of mushrooms.  It is so easy and does it ever kick up the flavor of this casserole.  First, about 1 1/2 pounds of mushrooms are sauteed in butter.  Sprinkle the mushrooms with some freshly ground pepper and add some salt and onions.  Cook until the onions are translucent.  To the mushroom onion mixture add some cream cheese and chicken stock.  Cook until the cheese has melted.  Believe me, this is one great tasting sauce.  Next, you add the fresh green beans to the slow cooker and pour the sauce over the beans.  Mix well and cook on low for 5 hours.

When the beans are cooked, stir and top with some fried onions.  MMM a delicious side dish is ready to serve.



Slow Cooker Green Bean Casserole
From Rachel Ray

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons salted butter
1 1/2 pounds sliced white button mushrooms
1 large yellow onion, peeled and finely diced
Salt and pepper, to taste
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup chicken stock
2 pounds green beans, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup fried onion topping, such as French's (optional – to add before serving)

PREPARATION

Heat the butter in a large skillet until it has just begun to brown. Add the mushrooms and stir. Cover and cook on medium heat for a good 10 minutes, stirring every so often, until mushrooms have shrunk in size and have wilted. Add two turns of the pepper grinder to the pan. This will take longer than you think it should – but don’t rush the mushrooms!

Add the onion to the mushrooms, along with a few more turns of the pepper grinder and a light sprinkling of kosher salt. Stir. Cook on medium-high heat until the onions are translucent. Drop in the cream cheese and chicken stock. Cover the skillet again and cook on medium heat until the cheese has melted fully. Turn off the stove.

Put the trimmed and rinsed green beans into an empty 6-quart slow cooker insert and pour the mushroom mixture evenly over the top. Stir to disperse the ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 5 hours, or on high for about 2 hours. Stir again, and serve as-is, or top with a cup of fried onions.

Serves 8-10




Thursday, July 31, 2014

Slow-Cooker Layered Enchilada Dinner


Easy and delicious:)  Two very important words to describe this recipe.  This south of the border casserole consists of ground beef which has been browned, some onion and garlic. soup, green chiles, enchilada sauce, tortillas and cheese.  The recipe calls for Monterey Jack cheese, but I used Mexican cheese.  

Start by making a sauce with the ground beef, onion, garlic, soup and chilies.  Next, you begin the layering process.  Some enchilada sauce is spread in the bottom of your slow cooker.  Cover the sauce with corn tortillas.  Next the beef mixture is spread over the tortillas and drizzled with some enchilada sauce.  Sprinkle some cheese over the mixture and repeat the layers.  Once you have constructed your casserole, sprinkle with some paprika.  Cover and cook on low for about 4 1/2 hours.  Be sure to let the casserole sit about 10 minutes before you serve.  This was the hardest part.  It looked and smelled soo good everyone wanted to try it.

The recipe suggest garnishing your casserole with some chopped fresh cilantro.  I garnished mine with some sour cream and chopped tomatoes.

The result:  A flavorful casserole that is very tasty and a perfect dinner.


Slow-Cooker Layered Enchilada Dinner
From Betty Crocker

Ingredients:
1 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef
1small onion, chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 can (10 3/4 oz) condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 can (4.5 oz)  chopped green chiles
1 can (10 oz)  enchilada sauce
10 corn tortillas (6 inch)
3 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese (12 oz)
Paprika
Chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:
1. In 10-inch skillet, cook ground beef, onion and garlic over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until beef is thoroughly cooked; drain. Stir in soup and chiles.
2. Spray 3 1/2- to 4-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. Spread about 1/4 cup of the enchilada sauce in bottom of slow cooker. Place 4 corn tortillas over sauce, overlapping and breaking in half as necessary to make an even layer. Top with 1/3 of beef mixture, spreading evenly. Drizzle with about 1/4 cup enchilada sauce. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the cheese.
3. Repeat layering twice, using 3 corn tortillas and half of remaining beef mixture, enchilada sauce and cheese in each layer. Sprinkle paprika over top.
4.Cover; cook on Low heat setting 4 hours 30 minutes to 5 hours 30 minutes.
5. Let stand about 5 minutes before serving. Sprinkle individual servings with cilantro.









Monday, July 28, 2014

Peach-Banana Smoothie


Basketball Camp started this morning.  It was a little hectic as I got the spouse off to work, made lunches for the older two for their workday and getting everything ready for Basketball camp.  I decided Tim and I would drink our breakfast this morning.

We started our day with a Peach-Banana smoothie.  I love smoothies because you can be creative in making this delicious drink.   I had a peach in the fruit bowl and I always have bananas either fresh or frozen.  The big question was if the oldest ate all of the Greek yogurt. Luckily, he saved us some.
 I put a banana, one peach peeled, some honey, Greek vanilla yogurt, ice, a dash of cinnamon, some orange juice and Whey protein powder in the blender.  Within a minutes - I had to scrap down the sides  Tim and I had our breakfast.  I ran out to the garden and picked some mint to use as a garnish.  I also had some orange zest that I sprinkled on top.

I added some Whey protein powder but you do not need to.  I thought it would give  Tim an extra boast for camp.   Besides we both like it and it adds a little extra to our smoothie.




Peach-Banana Smoothie


Ingredients:
1 medium banana, cut up
1 ripe medium peach, pitted, sliced
1/2 cup Greek Vanilla yogurt
1/3 cup orange juice
2 teaspoons honey
Dash cinnamon
1 scoop Vanilla Whey Protein (optional)
1 cup small ice cubes
Orange zest for garnish
Mint for garnish

Directions:

1. Combine all ingredients in blender container; blend 1 to 2 minutes or until smooth and frothy.

Makes 2 servings