Sunday, July 18, 2010

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

When this recipe came up in the rotation, Wayne was surprised to discover that the method for getting the pineapple on top is to turn the cake upside-down! I guess he'd never thought about it before. He was excited to learn a new skill, and we were excited to eat his creation, even despite the fact that none of us like maraschino cherries!Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/3 cup brown sugar
9 slices canned pinepple
3 maraschino cheeries
1 1/2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup shortening
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
2/3 cup milk

Preheat oven to 350°. Put butter in an 8x8" pan and place in oven until the butter melts. Sprinkle brown sugar over the butter and top with the pineapple slices, with a cherry in each center. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, cream the shortening with the sugar until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and egg and beat vigorously. Stir in the dry ingredients alternately with the milk. Pour the batter over the pineapple and bake for 45 minutes. Invert the pan on a wire cake rack; let stand 1 minutes before removing the pan to allow the syrup to drain onto the cake. Serve warm, plain or with whipped cream.

Jeralee's Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cake

Years ago our good friend Jeralee brought us the delicious cake. Today I felt like making it again, yet couldn't find the recipe. Google came to the rescue and I found 4 similar variations, which allowed me to recreate hers. One of the variations was to bake it in a jelly roll pan, for 20 minutes. I might try that next time. I also used pecans today instead of walnuts, because that's what our family prefers. Have fun making your own variations!Jeralee's Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cake
1-3/4 cups boiling water
1 cup uncooked regular oats
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking cocoa
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate chips
3/4 cup chopped walnuts

In a bowl, pour water over oatmeal. Allow to stand 10 minutes. Add sugars and butter, stirring until the butter melts. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition; then add vanilla. Sift flour, soda, cocoa and salt together. Add to batter. Mix well. Pour into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Sprinkle top of cake with walnuts and remaining chips. Bake at 350° for about 35 minutes. Yield: 12 servings.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Gazpacho

Here's one of Wayne's favorite recipes. According to him, we don't have it nearly as often as he'd like. Maybe we should work on changing that perception.
Gazpacho
3 cups tomato juice
1 tsp beef bouillon dissolved in ¼ cup water
2 tomatoes, chopped
½ cup chopped cucumber
¼ cup chopped onion
¼ cup wine vinegar
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon Tabasco sauce
Combine all ingredients. Chill several hours before serving.

Yes, there is such a thing as too much salt.

Last week, it was time to try another recipe from Wayne's Columbia Restaurant Cookbook - Fabada Asturiana. This one entailed a trip to the Latin Market, because we needed a special type of sausage -Morcilla or blood sausage - in addition to chorizo and ham hocks and salt pork.
We get to try it twice - once with canned beans, and again with dried beans.

Basically, it's a bean soup. Cook the beans, Morcilla, salt pork and ham hocks for a while.
Add the Chorizo and some potatoes and cook some more.
But don't add more salt! This was actually not palatable, although we tried to make it so by adding more potatoes to the bowl. Next time we'll try rinsing off the salt pork to see if that helps. My guess is Spanish Salt Pork is not the same as English Salt Pork (or whatever you want to call it)!

Jello Cake, Revisited

Normally when we make Jello Cake, we use a 9x13" pan and make it single layer. However, I was reminded that the original recipe called for it to be a two-layer cake. Then you can use two different colors/flavors of jello. Thanks, Peggy, for the birthday surprise!

Oh, and if you mix pudding into the Cool Whip for the frosting, that becomes more scrumptious as well.

Chicken Breasts Diane

Here's another recipe that satisfies those who are "starving" when you come home from church. It goes together very quickly. And if you have a crockpot, timed-oven feature, or even a microwave, the baked potatoes can be ready when the chicken is as well.Chicken Breasts Diane

4 boneless chicken breast halves, flattened
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons green onions
2 tablespoons lime juice
3 tablespoons chopped parsley
2 teaspoons Dijon-style mustard
1/4 cup chicken broth

Heat 1/2 the oil and butter in a large skillet and cook the chicken for 4 minutes on each side, or until just done. Transfer to a warm serving platter. Stir in remaining ingredients and heat through. Pour sauce over chicken and serve immediately.

Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad

Everyone thought it would be nice to have potato salad with our barbecued ribs on the 4th, but we were out of potatoes. (Wayne wants to know how you run out of potatoes!) Rather than run to the store, we decided that pasta salad would work. Here's the one we tried. 3 out of 4 of us liked it. I guess next time we feel like barbecuing we'll have to plan ahead and have potatoes in the pantry.
Becky's Bacon Pasta Salad

16 oz. small shell (or different type) pasta
3/4 cup ranch salad dressing
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup green peas
1/3 cup cooked, crumbled bacon
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Cook pasta according to directions; drain and cool. Combine with everything else. Chill for a couple hours.