You probably don't need a "recipe" for roasted carrots, but here it is anyway. :) I haven't made anything new in forever, and we're recovering from the holidays, so I need to get back into the swing of things and make some new dishes. I actually made these months ago. I made cabbage with the carrots, but we weren't fans of the cabbage as much, so I'll just stick with carrots for this post. (You can see the cabbage in the pic.) We actually had this with some Serbian sausages we brought back from Croatia back in October (so I guess it's been 3 months since I made these carrots!)
Happy New Year, BTW.
1/2 - 1 pound carrots, peeled and cut lengthwise into fourths
salt and pepper
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Drizzle a baking sheet with olive oil. Place cut carrots onto baking sheet and shake around to coat with oil, drizzling more on top if necessary. Top with salt and pepper, and place in the oven to roast. Roast for 10-15 minutes, shaking the pan from time to time. Check if they are tender enough. They should also be a little browned. If they are not tender or browned enough, leave them in until they are.
One of my aunts makes a really good Dill Dip that's also great over baked potatoes. I finally made it myself recently, and we had it over baked potatoes for dinner one night. I took a pic with the leftovers the next day- it's also super good as a chip dip. I'm going to make it in a few days for one of our New Year's Eve appetizers, and we'll dip veggies into it so we can feel a little bit virtuous as we're stuffing our faces with other unhealthy things. I'm also planning on using light sour cream (but regular mayo).
Besides dried dill weed, a very important flavor in this dip is Beau Monde seasoning. One doesn't see this around much anymore, and I of course can't get it over here. I looked into ordering it online and it was SUPER expensive. So I looked up a recipe to make my own, and it's SUPER easy, and I had everything I needed at home already. The ingredients are just onion powder, celery salt, and sugar. That's it!!! I'm glad I looked it up, because I've made this in the past without Beau Monde and it's just not as good. I'll include the recipe below. (I came across a ton of recipes with weird stuff like cloves and cinnamon, and that is NOT the Beau Monde I know and love. The recipe below is just right.)
from my Aunt M.L.
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup mayo
1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
1 tablespoon dried dill weed
1 teaspoon Beau Monde seasoning, recipe below
1. Combine all ingredients. You can let it sit in the fridge for a few hours for the flavors to come together, but it's good right away too. You can serve over baked potatoes, or use as a chip or veggie dip.
This was fun and easy to make, and it was very tasty. With crushed candy canes and white chocolate, it's pretty sweet, but it's ok. The kids LOVED this and want me to make it again soon. I was actually going to make it again to get better pics (it was getting dark, and my whipped cream was going flat), but I didn't have time, and it's getting really close to Christmas. So I'm just posting this now. :)
Slow Cooker Candy Cane White Hot Chocolate adapted from Real Housemoms
1/2 gallon whole (or 2% or 1%) milk (8 cups) 8 oz chopped white chocolate or real white chocolate chips (contain cocoa butter) 1/2 cup crushed candy canes or starlight candies 1/2 tsp. vanilla
pinch of salt whipped cream for serving more crushed candy canes for garnish
1. Add the milk, broken up white chocolate or white chocolate chips, crushed candy canes, vanilla and pinch of salt to a 5-quart or larger slow cooker. (I actually used my smaller slow cooker and it was fine- just almost full.)
2. Cover, and cook on HIGH for 1.5 hours (stirring every 15 minutes). Serve topped with whipped cream and topped with crushed candy canes for garnish.
I don't know where I came across this idea; maybe it was in one of my many recipe-related Email newsletters. However, I couldn't find that Email again, so I just googled "Lemon Lavender Lemon Bars" to find a recipe that looked good to me. I picked this one. This was so fun to make- I got some dried culinary lavender last time we went to the States, in Sequim, WA, during their Lavender festival. (Make sure you use culinary lavender when you're baking/cooking.) Btw- this might seem like a weird recipe for December, but I love lemon bars anytime, so I went with it.
1 cup flour, divided
⅓ cup confectioners' sugar
¼ cup cornstarch
¾ tsp. salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
1 tsp. crumbled dried culinary lavender
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. dried culinary lavender
3 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
½ cup fresh lemon juice
Zest of 1 lemon
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Meanwhile, line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment, leaving a 2-inch overhang. (I chose to skip this and it was fine-just used cooking spray.)
2. In a food processor, pulse 3/4 cup flour, confectioners' sugar, cornstarch, and 1/2 teaspoon salt to combine. Add butter and lavender, and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Transfer the dough mixture to the prepared pan, and press the dough evenly into the pan so that it goes up 1/2 inch on the sides. Bake dough until set and golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees F.
3. In the food processor again, (no need to clean it), process the granulated sugar and lavender until incorporated and fragrant. Transfer to the bowl of an electric mixer, and beat granulated sugar, eggs, and yolk until pale yellow. Beat in lemon juice and zest, and remaining flour and salt, until well combined. (You may be able to complete this step in the food processor, but I didn't try it that way.)
4. Pour filling over the still-warm crust and bake until filling is set, about 20 minutes. Remove pan from oven and let cool to room temperature; then refrigerate for at least 1 hour. To serve, dust the top with confectioners' sugar and cut into 16 squares. Top with more dried lavender, optional.
When we were first married, I remember my husband ordering Beef Tips w/Gravy at a restaurant- I thought he ordered it multiple times, but he only remembers once. Anyway, I remember it being tasty and I've never even thought of making them myself, until I saw From Valerie's Kitchen's recipe lately. It looked easy enough, so I decided to make this, and it's very good! Especially the leftovers the next day.
The recipe calls for top sirloin. I bought "beef round tip steak" instead, which was a fraction of the price, and even though it may be a tougher cut (although I know nothing about cuts of beef, but I assume it was tough because it was cheaper), the slow cooker is perfect for tough and inexpensive cuts of beef. It cooks and breaks down to become very tender.
3 pounds top sirloin or top round tip steak, cubed 3 tablespoon oil, divided 1 teaspoon seasoning or garlic salt, divided fresh ground black pepper, to taste 2 cups low-sodium beef broth 1 tablespoon Worcestershire 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning 1 teaspoon dry thyme 1 cup diced onion 1 tablespoon minced garlic 1 bay leaf 3 tablespoons water 2 tablespoons cornstarch
1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a 12" cast iron or other heavy skillet over medium-high heat. When nice and hot, add half the beef cubes and season them with 1/2 teaspoon seasoning salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste. Allow to sear on all (or most) sides without cooking through. Use a slotted spoon to transfer beef to the slow cooker. Add remaining oil to pan and repeat with remaining beef cubes, seasoning salt and pepper.
2. Add the beef broth and Worcestershire sauce to the slow cooker and sprinkle the beef with the Italian seasoning and thyme. Sprinkle the diced onions and garlic over the top. Add the bay leaf.
3. Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 7 hours or on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours, or until beef is fork tender. Turn slow cooker to HIGH; combine water and cornstarch in a small bowl and add to slow cooker. Stir until sauce has thickened and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Remove bay leaf and serve. Delicious serve over mashed potatoes, rice, or noodles.
I made as part of an easy dinner and LOVED it. It's SO easy! I've made homemade Queso dips in the past, but they usually require a roux. For this, cream cheese is the base and it melts right into green salsa. Then you add two other things. This is not just easy and delicious, but it only uses 4 ingredients! (Optional chopped cilantro, as the 5th ingredient- I didn't have any.)
Note: I can only get small (7 oz,) cans of green salsa (salsa verde) here. So I used 2 of those, to make 14 oz. instead of the 16 oz. called for in the recipe. It was fine. I also used a young Manchego cheese in place of the Monterrey Jack. I think an aged one would be too strong. The young Manchego was WONDERFUL in this.
1 (16 ounce) jar salsa verde (or 2, 7 oz. cans) 1 (8 ounce) package cream or Neufchatel cheese, cut into pieces 1 (4 ounce) can diced green chiles, drained 1-1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese (or a young Manchego) chopped cilantro, for garnish, optional
1. Place a large saucepan (I used non-stick) over medium-low heat. Add salsa, cream cheese, diced green chiles, and cheese. Cook, stirring, until completely melted. Pour into dish and garnish with cilantro. Serve with tortilla chips or Frito's Scoops.
I tried these caramels because they looked SO easy, I love caramels, and I had everything on hand. They were very easy and so good! They only use a handful of ingredients and you don't need a candy thermometer.
1½ sticks butter (12 tablespoons)
½ cup sugar
3 tablespoons light corn syrup (or honey)
14 oz sweetened condensed milk
½ teaspoon vanilla
coarse sea salt
1. In a medium sauce pan combine butter and sugar and stir over medium heat until melted. Stir in corn syrup and condensed milk. Bring to a boil and then decrease to simmer. Cook and stir for 7-10 minutes or until mixture achieves deep golden color, stirring constantly.
2. Pour caramel into a greased 8x8 inch pan (glass is best, I think) and allow to cool completely. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt if desired. When completely cooled, cut into squares and wrap in wax paper.