lillian13: (Default)

Last of the shopping is done! I went to a local place that roasts its own nuts and got stuff for the male in-laws. The female ones will get jewelry as usual. The boys are getting Alamo Drafthouse gift cards. Now to make jewelry and wrap (tomorrow). Off to see I Am Legend tonight with the World's Best Niece.

Very Nifty Frosted Brownies
(stolen from the Chocolate From The Cake Mix Doctor cookbook)

lillian13: (Default)
 OK, here are three party pleasers:

World's Best Cheese Straws
This is something of a Southern thing; the recipe is my mama's, straight from the 1962 St. Nicholas cookbook:


Brazil Nut Cookies
My mama again; from the same cookbook


Amazing Eggnog
Once you try this you'll never drink that abomination in a carton again. This is courtesy of my grandpa Blackie, who when asked by a snooty D.A.R. (Daughters of the American Revolution) lady where "his people" were from, answered "Well, half of 'em come over on the Mayflower, and the other half done met 'em at the dock."


I'm going to pass going to the my boss's holiday party tonight. The food is good but the music is too loud and too many of my co-workers will be there....
lillian13: (Default)

I knew I forgot to do something yesterday...

Slow-Cooked Tex-Mex Chicken and Beans (fast-cook method)
(adapted from Everyday Food magazine, Nov. 2007)
Serves 4 very comfortably.

This is the fast-cook (relatively) version of this recipe. If you want the crockpot version, ask me and I'll post it.

2 (15 oz) cans pinto beans, rinsed
1 jar chunky salsa (recipe says 11 oz, but 1 1/2 cups comes out to more like 14 oz. I've never seen an 11 oz jar of salsa, anyway. Use mild or medium heat)
2 cups water
1 onion, chopped
garlic to taste, chopped
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
coarse salt and ground pepper
1 1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs (I trim excess fat)
(I like to add red pepper flakes too, but I like the heat.)

Preheat oven to 350F. In a 5 quart Dutch oven, stir together beans, water, flour, and salsa. Season chicken with salt and pepper, arrange on top of bean mixture. Scatter onion and garlic on top. Cover pot  and bring to a simmer on top of stove. Transfer to oven, and cook until chicken is tender, ~ 1 1/2 hours. Remove chicken from pot, shred and return to stew. Serve topped with sour cream and cilantro.

lillian13: (Default)
 As a thank you for all the lovely fic and art I've seen and gotten this year, I'm going to post a recipe a day until Christmas eve, all tried and true.

I made these cookies for the office Christmas/White Elephant party and had a lot of requests for the recipe. I thought y'all might like it too...

(From Chocolatier  Magazine, Dec. 1994)
Double-Chocolate Coconut Macaroons
makes approx. 4 dozen cookies

2 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
2 large egg whites, at room temperature
Pinch of salt
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups (~7 oz bag) sweetened shredded coconut (break up any lumps)
3/4 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips

Position one rack in the top third of the oven and the other in the bottom third, preheat oven to 325F. Line two cookie sheets with aluminum foil. (Parchment paper might work, but I've never tried it.)

Combine the bittersweet and semisweet chocolates and melt. (I do mine in the microwave at 50% power in 15-20 second bursts. Be careful, since burned chocolate smells worse than burned popcorn.)

In a grease-free medium bowl using a hand-held mixer at low speed, beat the egg whites until frothy. Beat in the salt. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until the whites start to form soft peaks. Add the sugar one tablespoon at a time, and continue beating until the whites form stiff, glossy peaks. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the melted chocolate and the vanilla. fold in the coconut and then the chocolate chips. Make sure it's well-combined!

Drop the cookies by rounded teaspoonfuls onto the baking sheets, forming neat mounds (hah!), leaving about 1 1/2 inches between the cookies. Bake the cookies for 12-14 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through, until the cookies are just set and the surface looks dull.

Cool the cookies on the baking sheets for a few minutes, then remove them with a very thin spatula onto wire racks to continue cooling. I re-foil the sheets between batches, but whatever works for you. The cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days but I've never had them last that long.

Tomorrow: My favorite recipe that combines chicken, canned beans, and salsa.

 

lillian13: (Default)
I'm almost done with wrapping. I have the MOST HORRIBLE CHRISTMAS PAPER EVER OMG. It's from "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer", with soft-focus pictures of Santa, Rudolph, the Abominable Snowman, and really big pictures of the Burl Ives Snowman. I totally rock. I mean, this is even worse than the Spider-Man paper from last year, where the blue and green were complimentary enough that when you shook it you got afterimages. *beams* I can hardly wait for the 75% off sales to get next year's paper.

While I'm almost done with wrapping, I still have to make jewelry for my niece, my best friend, my sister-in-law, her sister-in-law, and her nieces. Oh yeah, and her step-mom. ( I do Christmas with them every year.) They get other things. Niece gets this calendar and this shirt, sister-in-law gets a really nice photo of the state capitol dome under a full moon, best friend gets a DVD. (Like the t-shirt? Order through this link and I'll get some credit!)

OK, Recipes

Try this and you will never buy that crappy carton eggnog again. Really.



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