SANDRA'S ARTISTRY ALASKA [retail online store items for purchase]

FOLLOW ME...

SANDRA'S FRESH APPLE STREUSEL COFFEE CAKE

A delightful change-up to an old  coffee cake classic
with the addition of thinly sliced fresh Fugi apples.

It's so amazing the incredible enhancement of flavors
that predominately come through 

once this dessert is allowed to sit overnight...


Servings: (12)
Prep: 15 min.
Bake: 45 to 50 mins.

INGREDIENTS

Streusel:
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped candied pecans
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Cake:

-Wet Ingredients -
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 (6-oz. carton) Chobani Greek Yogurt (I used strawberry, found by the case at Costco)
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon bourbon extract (or vanilla)

-Dry Ingredients-
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon fine-grain kosher salt

Fruit:
2 Fugi apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced

METHOD

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a glass 9x12" square baking dish and set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk streusel ingredients; set aside.

In a large bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg, yogurt, sour cream and vanilla until combined (while stopping mixer periodically to scrape sides of bowl). Place a sieve over top of large bowl of wet ingredients, adding flour, and sprinkling in baking powder, baking soda and salt; sift dry ingredients over wet ingredients, and mix until batter is fully incorporate (batter will be somewhat thick).

Using the back of an offset spatula, gently spread batter into prepared baking dish working from the center to outer edges; sprinkle 1/2 of streusel evenly over batter and gently press to adhere. Layer sliced apples in an overlapping fan fashion to form 3 rows lengthwise (see photo below), and gently press to adhere. Sprinkle remaining streusel over top.

Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour-10 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean and apples are tender. 

Cool coffee cake on a wire rack for a minimum of 30 minutes prior to slicing into 12 squares. ~ Enjoy!

Oh, the anticipation until it cools...




SANDRA'S ALASKAN HEARTY MOOSE LASAGNA

I created this lasagna recipe
using ingredients I had on hand this morning.

It turned out fabulous just in time for lunch!
We'll be enjoying this for dinner as well...

Servings: (12)
Prep: 15 Mins.
Bake: 1 Hr.
Let Stand: 15 Mins.

INGREDIENTS:

Moose meat sauce: 
--(When using no-boil lasagna noodles, it's imperative that the sauce be thinner than normal so the correct lasagna consistency is achieved):
1 lb. extra-lean moose burger 
--(or other types of meat, although drain after browning if non-extra-lean burger is not used)
1/4 cup finely chopped sweet onion
1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped button mushrooms
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/2 teaspoon granulated onion
2 teaspoons balsamic
1 teaspoon worcestershire
2 teaspoons amber agave
1 (24 oz jar) Newman's Own Organic Tomato Basil marinara sauce
1/4 cup water (to rinse marinara jar, as this sauce is rather thick)
1 (15. oz. can) Italian diced tomatoes, undrained

Cheeses:
4 cups shredded fiesta blend cheese, divided
1 (15 oz. container) ricotta
1/4 cup finely shredded fresh parmesan, plus more for final topping

Pasta:
12 no-boil lasagna pasta sheets

METHOD:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Set aside a 9x12" glass baking dish sprayed with oil, and place atop a slightly larger foil-lined baking sheet.

Moose meat sauce:
In a medium saucepan over medium high-heat, brown the burger half way about 3 minutes. Add the onion, bell pepper and onions and cook for 3 minutes. Add the remaining sauce ingredients and bring to boil; reduce heat to simmer, cover, and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, uncover, and set aside.

Cheeses:
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, gently combine 2 cups of fiesta blend cheese, ricotta and parmesan. Set aside, along with remaining 2 cups of fiesta blend cheese.

Pasta:
Lay out no-boil lasagna sheets; set aside.

ASSEMBLY:

Lightly cover bottom of prepared glass baking dish with a bit of sauce.

Then begin layering with 3 sheets of no-boil pasta, 3/4 cup of sauce, 3/4 cup of cheese mixture; repeat 3 times.

Final layer: Place 3 sheets of no-boil pasta, the remaining sauce, and top with reserved 2 cups of fiesta cheese, including a final sprinkling of parmesan.

Assembled lasagna, ready for the oven...
BAKE:

Cover baking dish with foil (sprayed underneath with oil to prevent cheese from sticking while baking). Bake for 45 minutes.  Remove foil and continue baking for 15 minutes, until lasagna is bubbly and golden on top. 

Remove lasagna from oven and let stand on wire rack, uncovered, for 15 minutes prior to slicing. Serve lasagna with your favorite dressed garden salad. ~ Enjoy!


SANDRA'S TROPICAL BANANA SPLIT DESSERT

Prepared this decadent dessert this morning,
and now enjoying it this evening...


Servings: (9-12)
Prep: 20 Mins.
Chill Crust (Freezer): 10 Mins.
Chill Dessert (Frig): 4 Hrs.

INGREDIENTS:

Crust
4-1/2 graham crackers, crushed (equals about 3/4's cup of crumbs)
1/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Pudding filling
1 (5.1 oz pkg) Vanilla Instant Pudding
2 cups cold milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pudding filling toppings:
1 can (8 oz.) crushed pineapple, drained
1/4 cup coconut flakes
2 sliced bananas (plus 1 more banana for serving)
2 tablespoons prepared chocolate sauce in squeeze bottle (plus more for serving)

Whipped topping
1/2 cup cold, fresh whipped cream  + 1 tablespoon sugar + 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, whipped
1 (8 oz. pkg) cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Just before serving - toppings
1 final sliced banana
1/4 cup chopped candied pecans
2 tablespoons chocolate sauce

METHOD:

Mix graham cracker crumbs, 1/4 cup sugar and butter; press onto bottom of 8" square glass baking dish. Freeze 10 min.

Meanwhile, prepare whipped cream in stand mixer with sugar and vanillla. When done whipping, add softened  cream cheese and remaining 1/4 cup sugar and whip with mixer until blended and smooth. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, beat pudding mixes and milk with whisk for 2 minutes. Spread filling carefully over crust; top with pineapple and coconut flakes. Slice 2 bananas; arrange over pineapple, and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of chocolate sauce.

Top with whipped cream mixture using an offset spatula.

Refrigerate dessert, covered with plastic wrap, for 4 hours to set and allow flavors to meld.

Heading to the refrigerator to set for 4 hours...
Slice the final banana just before serving. Cut dessert into squares to serve. Arrange banana slices over each dessert serving, drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons of chocolate sauce, and sprinkle with chopped candied pecans. ~ Enjoy!

SANDRA'S EASY NO-KNEAD DUTCH OVEN BREAD

An easy 5-minute no-knead dough to prepare the night before,
then quick to prepare upon waking the next morning
to enjoy throughout the day...


Yields: (1 loaf)
Prep: 5 Mins.
Total rising time: 9 hours
Bake 45 to 50 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon active yeast (not rapid or instant)
1-1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1-1/2 cups slightly warm water (tepid)

--2 teaspoons olive oil
(For top and bottom of dough ball so it doesn't stick or form crust while rising)

--Dutch oven (should be at least 4 quarts in size) with its lid.
Note: (Do not oil Dutch Oven, bread will not stick while baking).

METHOD

Add flour to bowl. Add yeast and sea salt and stir thoroughly. Add barely warm (tepid) water and stir thoroughly. The dough will look rough and shaggy.

Lightly oil top of dough with olive oil. Spread a thin layer over top with a paper towel, then oil your hands (to prevent dough stick to them) to turn the dough in the bowl so the whole ball of dough is coated with the oil.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Throw a kitchen towel over top and underneath of bowl and set it in a warm corner. Leave it alone for 8 hours. (Save plastic wrap).

When risen, in the bowl, fold dough over on itself at 3 times, then reform into ball. Using a bit more olive oil on hands and bowl, if need be to prevent sticking.

Cover dough with same plastic wrap and let it sit for 1 hour.

About 20 minutes before the hour is up, turn on oven to preheat at 450 degrees. Place an oven-safe Dutch Oven in oven to preheat at the same time as well.

After the full hour, the dough will have risen and nearly doubled in size. Quickly shape the dough into a round ball and drop it into the preheated Dutch Oven (be careful because it's really, really hot). Slash an 'X' on top of the dough with a sharp knife. Place lid on Dutch Oven and carefully place in oven and bake for 30 minutes.

Note: When removing Dutch Oven lid/pot from hot oven, 
be sure to do so using heavy pot holders, 
to a baking rack as they will be hot enough to scortch standard kitchen towels.

Remove the lid from the Dutch Oven and bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes. Bread is done when an instant-read thermometer inserted in the top reads 210 degrees.

Remove bread from oven. To keep warm for serving, wrap loaf in a clean kitchen towel. Slice and serve! ~ Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~
Tips: 

This bread is quite forgiving and can be left to rise from 6 to 12 hours, although the longer you let rise the more yeast flavor you'll end up with.

To make wheat, rye, etc., versions...simply change out, when initially mixing, 1 cup of all-purpose flour with your desired alternate flour.

To make artisan...simply add, after the first rising of dough and before the last 1-hour rise, a few of your favorite sugar, spices, herbs, seeds, nuts, dried fruit, chocolate or other chips, zest,  flavorings, cheese, etc. in modest amounts.

SANDRA'S MOOSEY ALASKAN SLOPPY JOES (Quick N Easy)

A surprisingly quick and easy method to prepare terrific sloppy joes for a crowd
that's nearly as fast as opening the traditional store-bought canned version, 
but tastier...


Serves: (6-8, depending on bun size)
Prep: 5 Mins.
Cook: 10 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

1 lb. lean moose burger (or venison, buffalo, caribou, elk, poultry, beef...)
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon finely chopped green bell pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped celery
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon low-sodium tamari (or soy sauce)
1 teaspoon worcestershire
1 (15 oz. can) tomato sauce
1/2 cup ketchup
1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard
6-8 potato buns (or your preference)

Side options:
-Potato Chips
-Dill Pickle Spears
-Sandra's Best Coleslaw (click for recipe)
-Sandra's Best Potato Salad (click for recipe)

METHOD

In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, brown the burger (drain if using non-lean).  Add the remaining ingredients; bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to low.  Cover skillet and simmer for 10 minutes, while occasionally stirring.

Meanwhile, lightly toast buns either under the broiler for a couple of minutes or in the toaster using the 'bagel' setting.

Serve immediately by generously spooning Sloppy Joe sauce onto bottom toasted bun, top with other half of bun. ~ Enjoy!

SANDRA'S ALASKAN RHUBARB UPSIDE-DOWN CAKE ~ from scratch

Newly created recipe
thanks to my neighbor for providing me with fresh rhubarb and my sis Tina for the inspiration.

This is guaranteed to be my best recipe to date of the most
succulent, moist and flavorful homemade rhubarb cake, ever! 


Servings: (9-12)
Prep: 15 Mins.
Bake: 25 to 30 Mins.

INGREDIENTS:

1st Layer: Rhubarb Mixture:
2-1/2 cups chopped fresh rhubarb (about 1/2" pieces; measure after chopping)
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) 1/2" cold unsalted butter cubed pieces

2nd Layer: Cake Batter:
--Wet:
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter (not margarine), at room temperature
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1-1/4 cups milk
--Dry:
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2-1/2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder (or regular)
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

METHOD:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13" glass baking dish; set aside.

Spread the rhubarb evenly over bottom of prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with brown sugar, drizzle with lemon juice, then dot with cold butter cubes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer (or hand mixer and large bowl), slowly beat sugar and softened butter for several minutes until light and creamy. Add the eggs, mayonnaise, vanilla extract and milk, then slowly beat to incorporate.

Sift dry ingredients through a sieve over wet ingredients in mixing bowl of stand mixer. Very slowly, pulse mixture to incorporate. Scrape sides of bowl and beat batter a final time.

Pour batter over rhubarb mixture in bottom of baking dish; spread batter out evenly using a spatula, then tap baking dish to level cake.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until top is golden and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Let cake stand for 5 minutes on a cooling rack. Release sides with a knife before inverting onto a rectangle cake platter (or large baking sheet). Serve warm or at room temperature. ~ Enjoy!



SANDRA'S HOMEMADE APPLE-BANANA-CRAN BARS with CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

Very moist and flavorful homemade bars,
with a distinct hint of banana, apple and cinnamon,
including the pop here and there of delicious craisins... 


Yields (32 bars)
Prep: 10 Mins.
Bake: 20 Mins.

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon double-acting baking powder (or regular)
1/4 teaspoon fine-grain kosher salt
1/2 cup mashed ripe banana (1 medium banana)
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup craisins, roughly chopped
--Cream cheese frosting (recipe below)

METHOD

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 10x15" baking sheet with parchment paper, and spray top; set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs, then stir in sour cream and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt; stir into the batter. Finally, mix in the mashed banana, applesauce, and chopped craisins.

Pour and spread batter onto prepared baking sheet, then gently shake side-to-side and tap baking sheet to distribute batter evenly. Bake for 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Allow bars to cool completely for 30 minutes in pan place atop a baking rack.  Place baking rack on top and flip over to remove parchment paper.  Place baking sheet atop, then re-flip over to cool completely in baking sheet before frosting, then cut into 32 squares. ~ Enjoy!

CREAM CHEESE FROSTING (Yields 2 Cups)

Prep: 5 Mins.

1 (8 oz. pkg.) of cream cheese, at room temperature
¼ cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups of confectioners’ sugar (sift through a sieve to prevent a lumpy frosting)
1 tablespoon milk (adding more or less, depending on your desired consistency)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium bowl, with a hand mixer cream together the cream cheese and butter, and mix in vanilla. Gradually stir in (with a spoon) the milk, and then the confectioner’ sugar; mixing until smooth.


SANDRA'S ALASKAN AMBER BEER BATTER CLAM FRITTERS

A crazy-good clam fritter recipe I created for lunch today!
It's like a party in your mouth, really...


Yields: 16 to 18 fritters
Prep: 10 Mins.
Cook: 4 to 5 Mins.

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup raw, minced clams (fresh, or thawed if frozen) that were soaked and cleaned (do not drain)
1 cup all-purpose flour
Locally brewed
Alaskan Amber...
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon old bay seasoning'
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
2 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice (from 1 fresh lemon)
1/3 cup Alaskan Amber Beer
1 large egg, beaten
Vegetable oil for deep frying

Servings options:
--Fresh lemon wedges
--Sandra's Homemade Tarter Sauce (I made the dill version)
--Steamed fresh broccoli
--Steamed rice

METHOD

Preheat oven to 225 degrees (warm). Place in oven a foil-line baking sheet topped with a wire baking rack.  Also, set a paper towel-lined aside on counter top.

In a medium bowl, use a fork to combine flour, baking soda, old bay seasoning, garlic and onion powders, sea salt, pepper, and parsley. In a measuring cup, add the beer, beat in egg, and add the lemon juice. Mix to combine. Stir in minced clams with their juices into the dry mixture, followed by the wet ingredients. Mix just until ingredients are incorporated (do not over mix), then set aside to let batter rest.

Meanwhile, heat 2" of vegetable oil to 375 degrees in a heavy-bottom pot over medium-high heat (use a candy thermometer). [Frying will commence in 3 batches, hence keeping fritters once they're fried in a warm oven.] When oil reaches desired temperature, use a mini (2-TB size) scoop to carefully drop batter mounds into hot oil. Deep fry until fritters are golden brown, turning once, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towel-line plate, sprinkle while hot with sea salt, then place hot fritters into oven on prepared rack to keep warm. Repeat.


Once all fritters are finished cooking, serve with fresh lemon wedges, Sandra's Homemade Tarter Sauce (I made the dill version), steamed broccoli, and basmati rice. ~ Enjoy!

SANDRA'S PUMPKIN TOFFEE OAT COOKIES

An amazing combination of ingredients all rolled into once terrific cookie recipe, 
you're going to love, love these yummy morsels!


Yields: (Appx 5 doz)
Prep: 15 Mins.
Bake: 10 to 12 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

Wet
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Dry
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
Pinch of salt

Additions
3 cups quick-cooking oats
1/4 cup toffee bits

METHOD

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a couple of baking sheets with silpats or parchment paper.

In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle, cream butter, and sugars until light and fluffy for a few minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl and add eggs, pumpkin puree and vanilla extract; beat until combined.

Place a sieve over mixing bowl of wet ingredients, and sift in flour, spices, baking soda and powder, and salt; mix on low speed until well combined. (Do not over mix). Add oats and toffee bits, mix on low just until combined.

Using a mini scoop (I use a 1/2-tablespoon size) and place dough in mounds onto prepared baking sheet, spacing at least 1" apart. Bake for 12 minutes (turning half way through baking) until slightly golden brown around edges. Cool on baking sheet for one minute; transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining cookie dough. ~ Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Tip:
Store cookies, once they're completely cooled, in an airtight container.


SANDRA'S SPICE 'N EVERYTHING NICE COOKIES

I was in a creatively baking mood today when I came up with this new recipe for these
light, lovely, and spicy cookies!

I've made this recipe so it creates only 3-1/2 dozen,
which works incredibly nice in a smaller batch for our 2-person household...

Yields: (3-1/2 doz)
Prep: 15 Mins.
Bake: 10-12 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar (plus more for rolling cookie balls)
1/2 cup quality molasses
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon fine-grain salt

METHOD

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Set a couple of baking sheets aside lined with silpat liners or parchment paper. Set a baking rack aside as well for cookies to fully cool. Place a 1/2 cup granulated sugar in a small bowl (to roll formed cookies into prior to baking).

In a stand mixer bowl, add butter, sugar and molasses, and beat to combine. Add egg and vanilla extract; mix to combine. Place a sieve over wet ingredients and add flour, baking soda and powder, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and salt; sift over top. Mix dough just until fully combined. (Do not over mix or cookies will become tough.)


Using a miniature scoop, scoop up dough to evenly form 1" balls and roll in sugar in the small bowl. Repeat until all cookies are formed. Place cookies 1" apart on prepared baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes (softer cookies) or up to 12 minutes (crispier cookies). Once cookies are done, leave hot cookies on sheet for 1 minute, then transfer to baking rack to fully cool prior to storing in an airtight container. ~ Enjoy!

SANDRA'S BEST-EVER PECAN-STREUSEL COFFEE CAKE

Nice, warm pecan-streusel coffee cake on a foggy Juneau, Alaska day
with a freshly brewed latte is simply divine...
Servings: (9-12)
Prep: 15 min.
Bake: 45 to 50 mins.

INGREDIENTS

Streusel (halved):
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped candied pecans
--2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (added to 2nd half)

Cake:

-Wet Ingredients -
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup Greek vanilla yogurt
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

-Dry Ingredients-
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon fine-grain kosher salt

METHOD

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a glass 8" square baking dish and set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk streusel ingredients (except melted butter, not yet) together and set aside.

In a large bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg, yogurt, sour cream and vanilla until combined (while stopping mixer periodically to scrape sides of bowl). Place a sieve over top of large bowl of wet ingredients, adding flour, and sprinkling in baking powder, baking soda and salt; sift dry ingredients over wet ingredients, and mix until batter is fully incorporate (batter will be somewhat thick).

Using the back of an offset spatula, gently spread half the batter into the prepared baking dish working from the center to outer edges; sprinkle 1/3 of streusel evenly over batter and gently press to adhere. Spread remaining batter in the same manner, and sprinkle remaining streusel over top and gently press to adhere.

Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. 

Hot out of the oven,
I wish you could smell its scrumptiousness!
Cool coffee cake on a wire rack for a minimum of 15 minutes prior to slicing into 9-12 squares. ~ Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~

Tip: This breakfast-type dessert is best if baked and allowed to cool overnight, the flavors that are allowed to develop are even more amazing!



SANDRA'S LIP SMACKIN' ALASKA VENISON TACO SOUP

Nothing says 'comfort' more than this fun and delightful tasting soup
on a blustery winter day
that's guaranteed to bring a smile to your face!




Servings: (6 to 8)
Prep: 10 Mins.
Cook 25 Mins.

INGREDIENTS:

2 slices bacon, cut cross-wise into 1/4" strips
1/4 yellow onion, diced
1/4 red bell pepper, diced
1 fresh jalapeno, seeds and ribs removed, finely diced
1 (14.5 oz can) chili beans, undrained
1 (14.5 oz can) Mexican-style diced tomatoes, undrained
3 tablespoons taco seasoning
3 tablespoons medium Picante sauce (jarred salsa)
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons ketchup
1-1/2 to 2 cups water (depending upon your desired consistency)
1 pound left over venison roast, finely diced

Garnish:
Tortilla Strips (our's are from Costco)
Shredded medium cheddar cheese
Roma tomatoes, diced
Sour Cream

METHOD:

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, brown the bacon half way. Add onions, peppers, and jalapenos to the skillet; sauté for 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients, (except diced venison and garnish toppings). Bring soup to a slight boil, reduce heat to low, cover, and let simmer for 15 minutes.  Add diced venison, cover, and heat through for about 5 minutes.

To serve, place generous handfuls of crushed tortilla strips in bottom of bowls, ladle taco soup over crushed chips, top each serving with shredded cheese, diced tomatoes, and a dollop of sour cream.  Place whole tortilla chips in center of dining room table.  When eating, scoop up the soup using whole tortilla strips (along with a spoon if you wish) ~ Enjoy!


SANDRA'S LICKITY-SPLIT FRUITY LAYERED JELLO DESSERT

My lickity-split and delicious fruity jello layered dessert now has a much-less chilling time to under 30 minutes. This process used to take 2 hours for the 1st layer, then overnight for the second in the refrigerator...Whew.

This newly created quicker method I've just devised has truly made my day!
 
Servings: (8 to 10)
Prep: 15 Mins.
Chilling: 25 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

2 (small 3 oz pkgs) strawberry jello
1 cup boiling water
1 (16 oz pkg) frozen whole strawberries, thawed, drained (reserve juice) then cut into quarters
1 (8 oz can) pineapple tidbits-or crushed, drained (reserve juice)
3 slightly ripe bananas, quartered lengthwise and diced
1/4 cup pecans, finely chopped, (optional)
1 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar (more or less to your desired sweetness)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

METHOD

In a medium bowl, dissolve gelatin in water. Stir in strawberries, pineapple, bananas, and pecans. Add 1/2 cup of reserved strawberry-pineapple juice. Mix to combine. Pour half of the mixture (about 2 cups) into an 8x8" glass square baking dish. Place level in freezer, uncovered, to quickly chill for 15 minutes, until set. (Do not freeze!)

Set the reserved gelatin mixture aside, at room temperature.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the sour cream, confectioners' sugar, and vanilla to fully combine. Carefully spread this mixture over chilled gelatin. Gently spoon reserved gelatin mixture over top to evenly distribute.

Chill dessert placed level in freezer, uncovered, for a final 10 minutes (no longer or dessert will freeze). Transfer chilled dessert, covered, to refrigerator until ready to serve with or without fresh whipped cream. ~ Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Tip: After dessert has set and you've placed it  in the refrigerator to keep chilled, if doing so longer than 30 minutes be sure to cover with plastic wrap until ready to serve.

FRUITY MEATLESS MINCEMEAT COOKIES (Easy 'N Tasty)

Even those who are not a fan of mincemeat adore these fruity (yes, meatless) cookies
and always come back for more!

The jarred meatless mincemeat consists mainly of fruit and spices,
hence this 7-ingredient recipe...
Yield: 4+ Doz.
Prep: 10 Mins.
Bake: 10 to 12 Mins.

INGREDIENTS
--Note: I've only slightly revised this recipe from its original None Such cookie recipe
and have been preparing these since grade-school days--

1-1/2 c granulated sugar
1 cup shortening
3 large eggs
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1-1/3 cups (1/2 of a 27 oz. jar) None Such (Borden) ready to use meatless

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare cookie sheets lined with silpat liners or parchement paper; set aside.

In large stand mixer, beat sugar and shortening until fluffy. Add eggs, beat well. Sift flour, baking soda and salt through a sieve placed over mixing bowl of wet ingredients. Mix together, then add in mincemeat and mix until combined.

Drop cookie dough using a small scoop or tablespoon, 2 inches apart, onto prepared baking sheets.

Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned. (Do not over bake or cookies will become too dry.  These cookies are meant to be moist and cake like. ~ Enjoy!


SANDRA'S COMFORTING PENNE with VEGGIES



Had a craving for a meatless dinner this evening 
so created this recipe using on-hand ingredients, 
which 'fit the bill' to perfection...

Servings: (6)
Prep: 10 Mins.
Cook: 25 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

1/2 lb. penne pasta, prepared according to pkg. directions
2 tbsp. light olive oil
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1/2 yellow bell pepper, finely chopped
6 crimini mushrooms, halved and sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
2 zucchini, cubed
1 (15 oz. can) diced Italian seasoned tomatoes, undrained
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons dried basil
2 teaspoons worcestershire
2 teaspoon balsamic
Small squirt of agave (or honey)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Finishing:
2 tablespoons. unsalted butter
Freshly grated parmesan cheese

METHOD

Begin preparing pasta according to package directions, except cooking shy by a couple minutes (pasta will finish cooking in sauce).  When draining, reserve 1/2 cup hot pasta liquid; set aside.

Heat olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat in a large skillet. Add onion, bell pepper, mushrooms and garlic. Cook until onions are translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Add zucchini and tomatoes, kosher salt, red pepper flakes, basil, worcestershire, balsamic, and agave. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook 10 minutes.

Add cooked, drained, hot pasta with and additional 2 tablespoons softened butter to skillet, along with freshly ground pepper, and reserved pasta water; toss to combine, and cook for a final 2 minutes.

Serve in pasta bowls, topped with freshly grated parmesan. ~ Enjoy!

SANDRA'S MILD GREEN-CHILI CHEESY SAUSAGE TATER TOT CASSEROLE

A simple but addicting breakfast/brunch casserole
with country sausage, mild green chilies, cheese and tater tots...


Servings: (10)
Prep: 10 Mins.
Bake: 45 Mins.

A simple but addicting breakfast/brunch casserole with sausage, mild green chilies, cheese and tater tots, oh my!

INGREDIENTS:

1 lb. ground country style sausage, browned
1 (4 oz. can) mild diced green chilies, drained (or medium-heat for spicier flavor)
2 cups medium shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups milk
3 large eggs, beaten
1-1/2 lbs. frozen crispy Ore Ida tater tots (='s 3/4's of a 2-lb. bag)

METHOD

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place sausage in a large skillet, and cook over medium-high heat until evenly brown using a spatula to bread into small bits. Drain, and spread evenly in bottom of a glass 9x13" baking dish. Sprinkle over sausage the diced green chilies, then shredded cheese.

In medium bowl, beat the eggs. Add the milk, and mix to combine. Pour mixture over cheese. Top with tater tots, and gently press into mixture.

Bake casserole, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes, uncovered, before serving. ~ Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~
Tip: I found it's also most-excellent topped with a bit of salsa and a tiny dollop of sour cream (over-the-top heavenly)...

SANDRA'S ALASKAN MOOSE ROAST - PRIME RIB STYLE

A simplistic method using minimal spices and ingredients
to guarantee utmost flavor
of our prized Alaskan moose roasts; prime rib style, that is!


Servings: (8-10)
Prep: 5 Mins.
Roast:  1 Hr. 20 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

4 lb. boneless moose roast (tied with kitchen string)
6 fresh medium garlic cloves, sliced in half
Canola oil (sufficient amount to rub entire exterior of roast prior to seasoning)
Fresh ground black pepper (we like to use a lot!)
Kosher salt (a fairly nice dusting)

METHOD

Remove roast from refrigerator 1 hour prior to roasting (tie with kitchen string if not already done). Using a sharp boning knife, poke as many small holes all over uncooked roast to insert the number of garlic clove halves; push in holes. Let prepped roast sit at room temperature for 1 hour (this is an important step to relax meat fibers).

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 450 degrees for a minimum of 15 minutes.

Rub roast with canola oil, and season exterior with freshly ground black pepper and kosher salt.

Place roast fat-side up on roast rack inside a shallow-sided roasting pan. Insert a meat thermometer into middle of roast.

Roast uncovered at 450 degrees for 20 minutes.

After 20 minutes of high-heat cooking, reduce heat to 350 degrees and continue to roast for 1 hour, or until meat thermometer registers 135 degrees for medium rare doneness (temperature will increase while standing another 5 to 7 degrees).

When 135-degree internal temperature is achieved, remove roast to a carving board. Tent loosely with parchment paper then foil (do not let foil touch roast directly) and allow roast to rest (without cutting) for at least 20 or more minutes to allow inner juices to redistribute. ~ Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Tips: Start checking internal roast temperature for a 3-lb roast (subtract appx. 15 minutes), or for a 5-lb roast (add appx. 15 minutes) of roasting time during the final 350-degree cooking time.

This method of roasting wild Alaskan game works well with venison (deer), caribou, beef., et. al...


SANDRA'S OLD-FASHIONED CHERRY PIE

One fabulous dessert that's not too difficult to prepare
and is so very, very satisfying!


Serves: (6 to 8)
Prep:
Bake: 45 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

Pie:
1-1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3 (14.5 oz. cans) pitted red tart cherries, drained,
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 pkg refrigerated pie crusts (Pillsbury: 2 will be enclosed)


Crust topping:
2 teaspoons milk
1 teaspoon granulated sugar + 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon


METHOD

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Set a 9" glass pie plate aside.

Lightly dust working surface with flour, gently unroll pastry, and use a rolling pin to slightly enlarge, just enough so pastry is a bit larger than pie plate. Repeat for top pastry crust.

In a large bowl, mix sugar and flour. Stir in cherries; fold to incorporate, and spoon into pastry-lined pie plate. Cut butter into small pieces; sprinkle over cherries.

Cover with top pastry. Brush with a pastry brush the inside of crust (not edges) with milk and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Cut slits cut in top pastry crust; seal and flute.  Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, cover edge with 3" strip of foil to prevent excessive browning; return to oven and continue baking for 25 more minutes, until golden brown and juice bubbles through slits in crust..

Cool on cooling rack at least 2 hours before serving with French vanilla ice cream. ~ Enjoy!


SANDRA'S LIGHT ASIAN DIPPING SAUCE with WILD ALASKA PAN SEARED SCALLOPS

A terrific Light Asian Dipping Sauce I created while in Yakutat, Alaska
preparing a family dinner when I had minimal on-hand ingredients,
served as a first course with Pan Seared Wild Alaska Bay Scallops ~ Delish!


Serves: 4
Prep: 10 Mins.
Indoor Grill: 4 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

Light Asian Dipping Sauce:
1 tablespoon low-sodium Tamari (soy sauce)
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon honey, more/less to your desired sweetness
2 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
Dash of garlic powder
Dash of onion powder
Dash of freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro (measured after mincing)

Scallops:
2-1/2 lbs Wild Alaska Bay Scallops

METHOD

Whisk all dipping sauce ingredients in a small glass (non-reactive) bowl. Let flavors meld at room temperature for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, rinse and pat scallops dry. Place on paper towel-lined baking dish. (Can be stored covered with plastic wrap in refrigerator for a few hours as such, although bring to room temperature for 20 minutes prior to searing.) Lightly pat tops of scallops one final time with paper towel prior to searing.

Preheat a dry cast iron grill-ribbed skillet over medium-high heat. Pan sear bay scallops for 1-2 minutes per side, depending upon size. (Larger scallops will take slightly longer to sear.) Do not overcook scallops or they'll become tough.

Place seared scallops on serving platter in a single layer with dipping sauce in a small, decorative bowl at the center, along with small dipping forks. ~ Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Tips: Pan sear scallops in batches so as not to overcrowd pan, preventing steaming scallops. Also, if using larger sea scallops, cut them into quarters prior to searing.


SANDRA'S 30-MINUTE CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP with CHEDDAR CORNBREAD

An all-time favorite...a quick and easy comfort meal that's oh so healthy for you!

Be sure to favorite/print out this recipe as I'm sure you'll want to prepare this
each and every time you find you have leftover chicken and/or turkey on hand...







Servings: (6)
Prep/Cook: 30 Mins.

INGREDIENTS

Soup:
1/2 tablespoon light olive
2 cups diced celery
1 cup diced carrots
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1/4 cup dry minced onion
1 teaspoon dried basil
2 tablespoons dried parsley, divided (see below)
1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/2 teaspoon granulated onion
1/4 teaspoon lemon pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground poultry seasoning
1/8 teaspoon ground turmeric
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon worcestershire

3 precooked, boned, skinned chicken thighs, roughly shredded, then cut into bite-size pieces
2 green onions, cut into 1/4" slices (both white and green parts)
1 (reserved) tablespoon dried parsley
1/4 cup frozen sweet peas

Noodles: Prepared and stored separately (See 'Leftover Tip' below)
--1 (8-oz pkg) No-Yolk Broad-Egg Noodles, prepared according to pkg directions (10-12 mins. cooking time)

Cheddar Cornbread (15-20 minutes baking time):
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
--1 (8.5-oz. pkg) dry Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
1/4 cup shredded medium cheddar cheese

METHOD

Preheat oven to 400 degrees, and set aside a sprayed, square 7" baking dish.  Place a separate medium pot on stove with 4 quarts water over high heat for water to boil for noodles.

First, begin preparing soup by heating oil in a heavy-bottom saucepan over medium high heat.  Add and sauté celery, carrots, dry minced onion, basil and 1 tablespoon dried parsley, granulated garlic and onion, lemon pepper, poultry seasoning, and turmeric for 5 minutes.  Add chicken broth, white wine vinegar, and worcestershire; stir to combine.  Bring soup to boil, then reduce heat to medium low to simmer for 15-20 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare noodles according to package directions.

Also, begin preparing cornbread batter in a small bowl by beating an egg with 1/3 cup milk, add and mix in with a fork the dry corn muffin mix, and fold in shredded cheddar cheese.  Pour batter into prepared baking dish and bake, uncovered, in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes.

At this point, finish soup by adding the chicken, green onions, remaining 1 tablespoon dried parsley, and frozen peas. Cook for 2 minutes, then turn off heat.

Drain noodles in a colander at end of cooking time.

Remove cornbread at end of baking time, and cut into 6 squares.

To serve, place 3/4 cups of prepared noodles into each bowl and ladle soup over top. Place filled soup bowls onto separate dinner plates, each with squares of cheddar cornbread slathered with butter ;) alongside. ~ Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Leftover Tip: I store cooked noodles separately in the refrigerator in ziploc bag so as to maintain their integrity, with the actual soup separately, covered, in an air-tight container.


SANDRA'S ALASKA WILD DUCK with SECRET SAUCE over STEAMED RICE



A wonderful Alaskan 'comfort food' recipe I created this evening
that consists of one Pintail and another Mallard duck.
~ Thanks to my husband! ~
We'll be looking forward to having this fine dinner again and again...

Servings: (8)
Prep: 30 Mins.
Cook: 1 Hr.

INGREDIENTS

1/4 lb bacon, cut into 1/2" strips, browned (retain grease and drippings)

4 Alaska wild duck breasts, brined (See below*)
= Must be brined 3 days prior
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/4 teaspoon granulated onion

Vegetables-herbs-spices:
2 cups sliced celery
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1/4 teaspoon dried sweet basil
1/8 teaspoon dried marjoram
1/8 teaspoon dried ground sage
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/4 teaspoon granulated onion

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

Sauce:
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 pkg dry brown gravy mix
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
3-4 cups water (depending on sauce consistency)
1 tablespoon worcestershire
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1 dry bay leaf

--Prepared steamed rice

METHOD

*Brine duck breasts 3 days prior to preparing recipe, as follows:

Clean and dress by boning and skinning two Alaska wild ducks.  Place four whole breasts in medium-size, clean, glass bowl in brine consisting of 1 tablespoon table salt and 4 cups cold water, cover and refrigerated for 3 days. Rinse brined duck breasts with cold water until water runs clear; pat dry. Remove any remaining silver skin, cut in half lengthwise, then slice into 1/2" thick pieces.

In a large heavy-bottom stainless steel skillet, over medium-high heat, brown the bacon. Using a slotted spoon, remove bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain; set aside. (Retain drippings and bacon grease in skillet).

Add duck pieces to the hot skillet, including granulated garlic and onion, and sauté until browned. Using a slotted spoon, remove duck pieces to another paper towel-lined plate to drain; set aside. (Retain drippings and remaining grease in pan).

Add celery, onion, basil, marjoram, sage, parsley, granulated garlic and onion to skillet and sauté until onions are translucent. Sprinkle in flour and sauté for 1 minute longer.

In the meantime, whisk all sauce ingredients in medium bowl; add to skillet. Also, add the reserved bacon and duck pieces, and bay leaf; bring to boil. Reduce heat to low to gently simmer, covered, for 1 hour, while occasionally stirring. Check sauce consistency when stirring, adding additional water, if needed.

Meanwhile, prepare steamed rice, according to package directions.


Serve over steamed rice with your favorite vegetable alongside. ~ Enjoy!

SANDRA'S EASY CHOCOLATE PARFAITS topped with CINNAMON PECANS

A quick and easy dessert I created using ingredients I had on hand
for a halftime treat ~ Go Seahawks!!


Servings: (6)
Prep: 15 Mins.
Set in refrigerator: 1 Hr.

INGREDIENTS

1 (6-serving size pkg) instant chocolate pudding mix
3 cups cold milk
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon agave (or granulated sugar)
1 (8 oz. tub) cool whip, thawed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons cinnamon pecans
--(found in the ice cream topping section of the market)

METHOD

In a medium bowl, whisk the pudding mix and milk until fully combined, place in refrigerator to set for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small glass bowl, melt the butter in the microwave, about 40 seconds. Add the graham cracker crumbs and agave; use a fork to combine.

Add vanilla extract to the cool whip; mix to combine.

Remove pudding, then layer dessert among 6 decorate glasses in the following order: 1/2 crumb mixture, half chocolate pudding, half cool whip, half cinnamon pecans - repeat a second time.

Place parfaits in refrigerator for a minimum of 1 hour to set and for flavors to meld. ~ Enjoy!

SANDRA'S NO-BAKE CHERRY YUM YUM

Truly, truly a ''yummmm...yummm" dessert
in both this cherry version ~ or the alternate blueberry option!


Servings: (12)
Prep Time: 15 mins
Refrigerate to set: Minimum of 4 hrs or overnight

INGREDIENTS

Crumb mixture:
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup granulated sugar

Creamy mixture:
1 (8 oz. pkg.) regular cream cheese, room temperature (not whipped)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
1 (16 oz. container) whipped topping, thawed (or 2, 8 oz. containers)

Filling:
1 (32 oz. can ) prepared cherry pie filling (or 2, 16 oz. cans) - Blueberry is an option too!

Garnish:
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar, sifted over top

METHOD

Using a fork, combine crumb mixture ingredients in a medium bowl.

Press half  of the crumb mixture in a glass 9x12x2" rectangle baking dish, set remaining aside.

In large bowl, add all creamy ingredients in 3 increments; switch to using a wooden spoon to fold in each addition until smooth.

Spread half of the creamy mixture on top of crumb crust. Top with pie filling. Add remaining creamy mixture in small dollops and sprinkle top with other half of crumb mixture, then press lightly to adhere.

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight. Generously dust top of dessert with a couple of tablespoons of confectioners' sugar sifted through a fine-mesh sieve. Cut into squares, and serve. ~ Enjoy!


LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...