January 19, 2013

Grands Mini Tomatillo Cilantro Chicken Pizza

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I found another reason to buy Pillsbury Grands Biscuits to have on hand.  These Grands Mini Pizzas are a great concept.  I work hard all day and sometimes when I get home I don't feel like making a mess or making something that is going to take more time than I want to spend (which a lot of nights is about zero time) cooking then cleaning in my kitchen.
When the Allrecipes Allstars did their Pillsbury Recipes just a couple months ago, it was also at the same time that there were a LOT of commercials on TV showing recipes you could make with their products.  One in particular that Grumpy wanted to try was the "Unsloppy Joes".  We did try them and he really loved them.
This month, we are again using Pillsbury products and making their recipes they have on allrecipes.com.  The Grands Mini Pizzas happen to be one of them.  I love this concept.  Not only was it quick and easy, but it was tasty.  I personalized my own mini pizza with some Lizbeth Lane Tomatillo Cilantro Pizza Sauce.  I've been wanting to try this sauce since they sent me 3 jars to try and this was my first chance.  The sauce was a very tasty change from my usual tomato, buffalo, or BBQ pizza.  If you haven't tried the Lizbeth Lane line, they you should check it out!

print recipe

Grands Mini Tomatillo Cilantro Chicken Pizza
  • 1 can (8 Biscuits) Pillsbury Grands Biscuits
  • 8 Tablespoons Lizbeth Lane Tomatillo Cilantro Pizza Sauce
  • 1 cup cooked chopped chicken pieces
  • 2 cups mozzarella, provolone cheese blend
  • 1/3 cup roasted red peppers, diced
  • fresh cilantro to garnish
Press each biscuit into 6-inch round. Place on 2 large or 3 small greased cookie sheets. Top each round with pizza sauce, cheese, chicken and roasted red peppers.

Bake at 375 degrees F 10 to 15 minutes or until bottoms are deep golden brown and cheese is bubbly.

Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 8 mini pizzas


I am an Allrecipes Allstar Brand Ambassador (a voluntary position) and I’m not compensated for my work with Allrecipes.com.

Products received from advertiser are only used for experienced-based reviews on The Life and Loves of Grumpy's Honeybunch. The reviews, content and opinions expressed in this blog are solely my own.

January 18, 2013

Will you be mine? Conversation Hearts

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In the new edition of Food Network Magazine there is a recipe for conversation hearts!  As soon as I saw them I knew I had to make them, personalize them, and send them to my kiddies!  I've never worked with fondant before but found out it wasn't hard to do at all.  I think its a great recipe, but if I made them again I would definitely be out there looking for stronger flavors.  I only had vanilla, almond, and rum flavoring in my cupboard so that was what I went with.
So to Justin (JJ) & Kristina and my grandpuppies Isabelle and Maggie....
To Christopher (Furr), my rock star who I want to keep dreaming big.....
To Grumpy, who my friend Karry said "wasn't so Grumpy after all".....
To my parents who started this whole thing going ;-)
and my Kitties....Miss Kitty, Rudy, and Chubby....
You all have my heart and I love you so much...that I had to put it on candy to tell you.  (BIG SMILE)


Conversation Hearts
Why buy the candy might make your heart melt but then break your teeth?  :)  These are softer than the ones you can buy in the store, but are just as good and fun to boot!
  • 1-1/4 ounce packet unflavored gelatin powder
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 cups confectioner's sugar
  • assorted food coloring, for tinting
  • assorted extracts, for flavoring
  • cooking spray
  • food decorating pens, for writing
Whisk the gelatin, corn syrup, vanilla, salt and 1/2 cup boiling water in a stand mixer bowl until the gelatin dissolves.  Using the paddle attachment, beat in the confectioner's sugar on medium low speed, 1 cup at a time, to make a stiff, sticky dough.Transfer the dough to a clean surface and knead, adding more confectioner's sugar as needed (up to 1 cup), until the dough is smooth, pliable and slightly tacky, about 5 minutes.Divide the dough into 4 pieces.  Flatten 1 piece into a disk.  Cover the rest with plastic wrap.  Add a few drops food coloring and extracts to the flattened disc.  Fold in the sides and pinch closed, then knead until the color is distributed.Lightly coat a large piece of parchment paper with cooking spray.  Roll out the colored dough on the parchment until 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick.  Cut into hearts using 1-inch cookie cutters.  Transfer to parchment lined baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining dough using different colors and extracts.  Let the hearts sit at room temperature, uncovered, until dry and hard, about 24 hours, flipping them about halfway through.  Write messages on the hearts using food decorating pens.  Store in an air-tight container up to 1 week.
Prep time:

Note:  this was more time consuming for me than the recipe stated.  Cutting several tiny hearts is very tedious work.  I think that is where the loves must come in ;)  I had a hard time finding cookie cutters that were 1 inch hearts - but Wilton does make a linzer cookie cutter that worked perfectly for me!

January 12, 2013

Spicy Asian Chicken Soup

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I. Love. My. Nook. Tablet.

Yes.  It is the best invention ever.  Why?  Well, because I now no longer have magazines strewn all over my house!  With the exception of a few "specialty" magazines, my house is now clutter free from magazines and I will not buy the hard copies ever again!

My NOOK Tablet HD+ 16GB BNTV600 (Google Affiliate Ad) library allows me to subscribe to all my favorite magazines for a much less costly rate than buying the magazine itself - and if your one who likes to have the hard copy and you still have a nook, then I think that you can get the electronic version free for some magazines.  I won't be bothering with the hard copy though.  :)  It also allows me to keep all my magazines neatly on my virtual bookshelf, has a bookmark page where I can quickly find recipes I bookmarked.  Then I can set it up on the counter and just follow the recipe from there....oh yeah.  I love it.  :)  

Which brings me back to this soup.....
There is this place I love to go to for lunch on Central Avenue in Albany called Pho Yum. They have the absolute best Pho soup I have ever had and I literally crave the stuff.  In any case, the reason I am telling you about this is because I did a trial subscription to Rachel Ray Magazine on my nook tablet.  I decided to continue getting the magazine and in the new year issue, this soup recipe grabbed my attention.  Its not the Pho soup I get at Pho Yum, but it was a pretty decent rendition of an Asian soup.  For my taste it wasn't spicy enough but for Grumpy it was perfect.  To make it perfect for me, all I did was add a little sirachi and hoisin sauce.  Grumpy loved it so much that he was not happy he forgot we had it when he went for lunch one day, and even after eating his can of yucky pork and beans, he filled up a bowl of the soup.  After he finished his words were "That was the worst soup ever.  You can never make it again."  Oh Grumpy.  Your such a smarty pants.  ;)

I think you should go to your kitchen and make yourself some of this right now.  :-)

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Spicy Asian Chicken Noodle Soup
adapted from Everyday with Rachel Ray Jan/Feb 2013 issue.
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons red curry paste
  • 5 oz rice noodles, such as maifun
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges for serving
  • to taste sirachi
  • to taste hoisin sauce
In a medium saucepan, bring the chicken, chicken broth, and two cups of water to a simmer.  Lower the heat, cover and simmer until chicken is cooked through.  Approximately 30 mimutes.  Remove the chicken; let cool.  Shred the meat.Strain the broth and bring back to a simmer over medium-high heat.  Whisk the curry paste into the broth.  Add the noodles and bell pepper and cook until the noodles are just tender, about 3 minutes.  Stir in the chicken.
Ladle the soup into bowls and top with the scallions and cilantro leaves.  Serve with lime wedges.  Add sirachi and hoisin sauce to taste.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: Serves 4

Disclaimer - the thoughts and opinions on the Nook Tablet are purely my own. I did not receive any compensation in any way for writing this post. I just enjoy my Nook tremendously and wanted to share this with my readers.

January 07, 2013

Sweet Potato Gnocchi

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I have had gnocchi one time in my life and I hated it.  However, people kept going on and on about how good it was.  I decided that maybe what I needed to do was make my own!

Well I was lucky that it was in the stars for me to make it recently....as when I was browsing the blog I had been assigned as my first blog of the year for the Secret Recipe Club, I came across a recipe for Sweet Potato Gnocchi!  It was destiny.  I was going to make it.  The flavor sounded awesome and all I needed to buy was some sweet potatoes.

The wonderful blog that I stumbled upon this delicious recipe for is Culinary Adventures by Camilia.  I had a little bit of trouble with the recipe.  I needed way more flour than Camilia used in hers.  I'm not sure why but all I can say is these little pillows of heaven turned out awesome and I will definitely not be able to say that I don't like gnocchi anymore!  Thank you Camilia for inspiring me to make these soft, pillowy, bites of fall with the earthy sage browned butter sauce.  They were awesome!

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Sweet Potato Gnocci
Gnocchi kicked up with a little cayenne and sage in the dough...then dressed up with browned butter and sage sauce.  Delicious!
  • 3 cups pureed sweet potato
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon rubbed dried sage
  • 2-1/2 to 3 cups (use as needed) all purpose flour
  • 1 large egg, well beaten
  • for the sauce:
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 8 large fresh sage leaves
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled
Mix the potato puree, butter, cayenne pepper and rubbed dried sage until well combined.  Stir in the flour using enough flour until a soft dough forms that is easy to handle.  

Using about 1/2 teaspoon of dough, with floured hands, roll the dough with the tines of a fork and a little extra flour as needed to prevent from sticking.  Mark the dough with the tines to give a ridge effect to the gnocchi.  Set aside until ready to cook.

When ready to cook gnocchi, heat 4 cups of vegetable broth on the stove until boiling.  Add gnochhi and turn heat down to a simmer and simmer gnocchi until they float to the top (about 2-3 minutes).  Remove from broth and place in a colander to drain more then transfer to a cookie sheet.

To serve gnocchi, make your sauce.  Bring butter to a bubble and add fresh sage leaves.  Watch carefully as your butter and sage can burn.  Make sure your heat is not too high.  Once butter and sage leaves are browned, remove sage and crumble back into the butter.  Toss with gnocchi.  Sprinkle with Feta, toss to coat.  Serve!
Note, this can be time consuming if you have never made gnocchi!  Time listed below is approximate.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time:

January 06, 2013

Rudy - January 6, 2013

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He's absolutely perfect (IMOH!)  Handsome

Just look at those eyes....so clear and so beautiful.

I love my Rotten Rudy Rut-ton :)  
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