Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Breakfast Sausage Casserole

Breakfast Sausage Casserole
Prep Time: 15 mins.
Cook Time: 1 hr.
Servings:  8


1 (12 oz) package breakfast sausage, cooked, drained and crumbled
4 cups (approx. 12 pieces) cubed day old bread
2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
2 cups milk
10 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
ground black pepper to taste


1.  Grease 13 x 9 inch baking dish.  Place bread in prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese.  Combine milk, eggs, dry mustard, onion powder and pepper in medium bowl.  Pour evenly over bread and cheese.  Sprinkle with sausage.  Cover.  Refrigerate overnight.

2.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

3.  Bake for 55 to 60 minutes or until cheese is golden brown.  Cover with foil, if top browns too quickly.


Monday, May 30, 2011

Braised Beef Short Ribs

Braised Beef Short Ribs

12 Beef Short Ribs, bone-in
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
1 yellow onion, peeled and chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 750-ml bottle good dry red wine
6 cups beef stock

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Season ribs to taste with salt and pepper.  Heat oil in a large heavy bottomed oven-proof pan over high heat. Add ribs and brown on all sides.  Work in batches if you need to so that the ribs don't get crowded (this will help with browning).

2.  Transfer ribs to a plate.  Pour off excess fat.  Add the onions, celery, and carrots to the pan and saute, stirring often, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes.  Remove the vegetables from the pan, set aside.  Then add the wine to the pan, deglazing the pan, scraping off any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.  Reduce the wine by three-quarters until thick and slightly syrupy, about 15 minutes.

3.  Return the ribs to the pan, add the stock and enough water to cover the ribs. Bring to a boil, cover with foil, and place in the oven.  Braise, cooking in the oven until the meat is fork-tender, 2 to 2-1/2 hours.  During the last 1/2 hour of cooking, add back in the vegetables.  Allow the ribs to cool in the liquid, then cover and refrigerate overnight.

4.  The next day, remove the excess fat that has solidified at the top from the overnight chilling.  Place the pan with the ribs and cooking liquid over medium heat, uncovered.  Cook until the liquid has reduced by three-quarters, about 1 hour.  Continue to cook, spooning the sauce over the ribs, until the sauce is thick and ribs are glazed.  Take care not to burn the glaze; move the ribs around in the pan to keep them from burning.

Serve over mashed potatoes, egg noodles, or rice. Serves 6.


Slow-Cooked German Short Ribs

Slow-Cooked German Short Ribs
Prep. Time: 25 Mins.
Cook Time: 8 Hours 20 Mins.
Servings: 6

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 pounds beef short ribs
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, sliced
1/2 cup dry red wine
1/2 cup chili sauce
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup water

1.  In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons flour, salt, and pepper.  Coat the short ribs with the flour mixture.

2.  In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.  Brown short ribs in olive oil.

3.  In a slow cooker, combine onions, wine, chili sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, and chili powder.  Mix thoroughly. Transfer the short ribs from the skillet to the slow cooker.

4.  Cover, and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.

5.  Remove ribs, and turn the slow cooker control to high.  Mix the remaining 2 tablespoons of flour with 1/4 cup water, and stir into the sauce.  Cook for 10 minutes or until thickened.


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Spinach Soup

I find it hard to believe but I think this is now my son's favorite soup.  He asked for it twice already.  I haven't had a chance to try it myself.  The boys finished before I could gets some.  It is also very easy to make.

The first time I made this soup, I used fat free half and half instead of skim milk.  This time I used a combination of skim milk and fat free half and half.  He says that the soup was "sweeter" last time.  I guess I will use fat free half and half from now on.  Otherwise, I use the recipe "as is" except I don't put it in a blender (because the first time I made this soup, I tried the blender and had an explosion of soup).  I probably should have done the batches but I was in a hurry (of course). This time I used my immersion blender.  I got better results and less mess. 

Spinach Soup
by Fiona Haynes (www.about.com)

Prep Time:  20 Mins.
Cook Time: 25 Mins.
Total Time:  45 Mins.


2 tsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
1 medium white potato, peeled and cubed
2 cups fat-free, low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
2 cups fat free milk (or fat free half and half)
1 six ounce bag baby spinach
Freshly ground black pepper


1.  Heat oil in large saucepan or Dutch oven.  Saute garlic, onion, celery and potato for 5 minutes.
2.  Add chicken broth and fat free milk.  Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
3.  Stir in half of the spinach, cover and simmer for 10 more minutes.
4.  Cool slightly, then transfer soup to a blender, working in two batches, if necessary.
5.  Add remaining spinach and blend (if working in two batches), use half the remaining spinach with each batch).  Blend until smooth.
6.  Garnish with pepper to taste.

Serves  4.


The Creative Cook

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Quiche Lorraine

I made this quiche for Mother's Day.  It was very delicious.  Everyone seemed to enjoy it. Instead of milk, I used fat free half and half which is somewhat creamier.  Other than that, I left the recipe as is. This recipe comes from www.allrecipes.com.

Quiche Lorraine


1 recipe pastry fora 9-inch crust
6 slices bacon
1 onion, minced
3 eggs, beaten
1-1/s cups milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cups shredded Swiss cheese
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour


1.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).  Place pastry shell into 9-inch pie or tart pan.  Line pastry shell with foil.  Bake in oven for 8 minutes.   Remove foil and bake for an additional 5 minutes, or until crust is set and dry.  Remove from oven and turn down temperature to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

2.  In a large skillet, cook bacon until crisp.  Drain and reserve 2 teaspoons of drippings.  Crumble the bacon and set aside.  Cook onion in skillet with reserved drippings.  Cook until onion is tender and then drain.

3.  In a large bowl, mix together milk, salt and eggs. Stir in bacon and onion.  In a separate bowl, toss cheese and flour together, then add to egg mixture.  Be sure to mix well.  Pour egg mixture into pie crust.

4.  Bake in preheated oven for 35  to 40 minutes, or until knife inserted in center of quiche comes out clean.  If necessary, cover edge of crust with foil while baking to prevent burning or over browning.  Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.


The Creative Cook