Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Carrot Cupcakes with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting

I am not much of a baker....would much rather cook main dishes & sides.  However, I came across this recipe from my Cooking Light magazine from 1999 last week...yes, I save all my old cooking magazines!  It went totally against my belief of cooking recipes with 10 items or less, but it looked so good I had to try it.  So happy I did because they were amazing! 

This recipe is supposed to make 12 cupcakes which will have 220 calories each.  I only have a muffin tin that makes six large cupcakes & that is what I came out with.  So if you do the same make sure you double your calories.  Otherwise cut it in half...they are rich with the cream cheese icing so they should satisfy your sweet tooth.

2/3 cup granulated sugar
3 Tbl. vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 cup finely shredded carrot
1 (8oz) can crushed pineapple in juice, well-drained
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 cup raisins

1/4 cup (2 oz) 1/3 less fat cream cheese, chilled
1 Tbl. butter softened
1 1/3 cups powdered sugar
3 Tbl. flaked sweetened coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.   To prepare the cupcakes, beat first 4 ingredients at medium speed of a mixer until well blended. Add carrot & pineapple; beat well.   Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour & next 5 ingredients (flour through nutmeg) in a bowl, stirring well with a whisk.  (I do not own a whisk so I used a fork.)  Add flour mixture to sugar mixture; beat well.   Stir in raisins.

Spoon batter into 12 small muffin cups (or 6 large) lined with paper liners. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool for 5 minutes then remove from pan & let them continue to cool.

To prepare the frosting, beat the cream cheese & butter at medium speed of a mixer just until blended. Gradually add powdered sugar (do not over beat).  Spread icing on cupcakes & sprinkle with the flaked coconut.

This takes a little work, time wise, but worth it...Enjoy!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Easy Bean & Cheese Enchiladas

I have found a new favorite recipe...actually it is an old one from Cooking Light magazine in 1999.  This is quick, easy, & also a great vegetarian meal for those nights when you have no time to cook.   I changed the recipe a little to make it easier for me...here is my version.

1 cup chopped onion (or less if desired)
1 16oz. can fat free refried beans
1 small can of mild green chiles
1 1/2 cups of shredded Mexican cheese (made with 2% milk)
Flour or corn tortillas
1 19oz can of red enchilada sauce
Low-fat sour cream
Chopped black olives

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Combine the onion, refried beans, & green chiles in a bowl...microwave on high for 3 minutes.   Stir in one cup of the cheese until melted.  Place bean mixture on tortillas & roll up.  Place in 11 x 9 baking dish & pour the enchilada sauce on top.  Sprinkle with the remaining cheese & bake in oven for 8 minutes.  Remove from oven & top with sour cream & black olives if desired.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Sauted Broccoli

My family loves broccoli & this recipe is easy, flavorful, & healthy!

1-2 heads of broccoli (depends on the servings you need)
olive oil
1-2 Tlbs. minced garlic
1 cup chicken broth

Cut the broccoli flowerettes off the head (or you can buy broccoli in your produce department already cut).  Heat olive oil in a large skillet or pan on med-high heat.  Add garlic & saute until brown.  Add broccoli & saute for 2 mins.  Add broth to pan, reduce heat & simmer until tender.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Tender Pot Roast (Gluten-free)

An easy main dish to fix when you are expecting company is pot roast.  Here is my pot roast recipe that gets rave reviews every time...plus it is gluten free.

3-5 lb. chuck roast
Cooking spray
1-2 cups of beef broth (as needed)
1 14.5 oz can of Italian-style tomatoes
1 Tbls. dried oregano
1 bay leave
2 Tbls. dried parsley
8 black peppercorns

Coat a large pot with cooking spray & heat on top of the stove on medium-high until hot.  Once hot sear the roast for 2 minutes on each side.  Then add 1 cup of the broth & the remaining ingredients. Reduce heat, cover & simmer for 3 hours.  Add additional broth during the cooking time if needed.   Add potatoes & carrots during the last hour if desired.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Cast Iron Pans

Just wanted to give you a cleaning tip for your cast iron pans.  Never use soap on them, just water & a wire brush if needed for clean up.  Also never pour cold water in them while they are hot...it could cause the cast iron to crack.

I like rubbing mine down with oil as well before I put them away.  I use whatever I have on hand...vegetable, canola, etc.   The oil will help keep it seasoned & removes any rust that may be forming.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Aunt Margie's Homemade Salsa

As I was going through my cookbooks today a little piece of folded paper fell out.  When I opened it I discovered it was a homemade salsa recipe that my aunt Margie had given to me years ago.  So I am sharing it with you today.

3 qts. of chopped tomato
1 pint chopped onions
1 pint chopped bell pepper
8 chopped jalapenos
1/2 cup vinegar

Mix everything together & simmer for 1 hour. 

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Pork Roast / BBQ Pork Sandwiches (Recipe for 2 meals)

I am always looking for ways to make my meals stretch.  Here is a roast pork recipe that can be turned into a second meal the next day.

4-5 lb. pork loin roast
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp paprika
2 cups water

Sprinkle the pork with the dry ingredients.  Place in roaster & add water (this will keep it from drying out). Seal the top with foil & bake at 350 degrees for 2 hours or until tender.   This will be your first meal.

The next evening cut up the leftover pork into bite size pieces & place in baking dish.  Cover with your favorite BBQ sauce & bake uncovered at 300 degrees for 30 minutes.   Serve on warmed hamburger buns.