Monday, June 27, 2011

Cream Cheese Frosting

This frosting is awesome. I'm not a huge cake fan, or frosting fan, but this recipe is a creamy and delicious addition to any cake or cupcake. While not too overpowering, it has a distinct cream cheese flavor.

2 eight oz packages of cream cheese
1/2 cup of butter (or Imperial Vegetable oil for a healthier option)
2 cups of confectioners or powdered sugar (make sure there are no lumps)
1 teaspoon of vanilla (add more to taste if desired)

Make sure the cream cheese and butter are both softened...lumpy frosting is a downer. Whip the cream cheese and vanilla together, gradually add the butter, and then the sugar. Voila! You have a delicious frosting. Chill in the fridge until you need to use it.

This frosting in perfect for chocolate or pumpkin cakes! I used mine to make a double layer chocolate cake decorated with red raspberries. Buon Appetito!

Tip: Adding about a half cup or so of Cool Whip makes this frosting more fluffy if you are looking for a lighter texture.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day Recipe- Homemade BBQ Sauce

For Father's Day, my dad asked me to cook him and the family dinner. After going through recipes I decided to try my hand at grilling, and I must admit that I'm still at a loss as to why so many men are crazy about it. Perhaps it was my attempts to wrestle our two large dogs away from the chicken while I grilled...

BBQ chicken on the grill is a classic, and I wanted to make the meal extra special since it was celebrating one of the most inspiring people in my life- my dad. Here's my Father's Day recipe for sweet homemade BBQ sauce:

2 Tablespoons of veggie oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic put through garlic press
3/4 c. of ketchup
2 Tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce
2 Tablespoons of white wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons of brown sugar, packed
1 Tablespoon of honey- add more or less to taste
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of mustard powder (optional)
1/2 cup of water

This recipe is super easy. Just chop the onions, and saute them in veggie oil. After they start to soften, add the garlic. Saute for just a couple minutes, then add the rest of the ingredients. Bring to a simmer, and continue to simmer for 15-20 minutes. If you want it to be thicker, add less water. This recipe makes plenty for 10 pieces of chicken.

Tip: Marinate the chicken in the BBQ sauce for at least a couple hours, or even better, overnight!

Buon Appetito!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Creamy Chicken Crepes

This recipe required the intervention of Nate, my boyfriend. Let me just confess now that I cannot make crepes to save my life. I tried my hand at one, and it ended up looking like a anemic pancake. Good. Thankfully, Nate had spent the previous summer watching a cooking show, and flipped the crepes like a pro. Meanwhile, I worked on the filling. I didn't use a recipe for this one to see what I could come up with. The product actually turned out very well. The food was delicious and extremely filling. You can find a traditional crepe recipe anywhere online. Be warned, however, that the mixture should be runny and and you will most likely need to add extra milk to the crepe mix.

For the Sauce:
1 eight oz package of cream cheese
1/2 can of cream of chicken soup
2 Tbs. of butter (or, as a healthier option use Imperial Vegetable Oil Spread)
1 1/2 Cup of milk (add more or less depending on thickness of sauce)
Paprika to taste 
Salt and Pepper to taste
A splash of white wine vinegar (optional) 
1 1/2 lbs. of boneless chicken

Cook the chicken in a frying pan and season lightly with salt and pepper. Set aside when cooked. Now to begin on the sauce! Soften the cream cheese, put in sauce pan. As it warms it will be easier to mix in. Add 1/2 can of soup, then the butter. Cream together on medium low heat as you add the milk gradually. Begin adding paprika, salt, and black pepper. Taste test to see if you want more or less of these. If you want, add the white wine vinegar for a little kick and to heighten the flavor. When the sauce begins to simmer, add the cooked chicken pieces and mix in. Let this mesh together on medium low heat for about 5-7 minutes. Keep in mind that the mixture will thicken when it cools. 

Take pan off of heat, and spoon the creamy chicken into the crepes, wrap, and place fold-side down in a dish. Pour the extra sauce over the top of the crepes and sprinkle some paprika on top for presentation's sake. 

Buon Appetito!