Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Roasted Cauliflower

My very favorite way to eat cauliflower is boiled, drained and then sprinkled with butter drenched bread crumbs. Well, that may not be exactly the healthy way but it sure is my favorite way to devour it.

My second favorite on the list is Mashed Cauliflower. No, you cannot pass it for mashed potatoes by any means, but it is an incredibly delicious side dish.

THEN the wildest thing happened.  I stumbled upon this roasted cauliflower recipe made in an iron skillet. Let me mention that I have made roasted cauliflower in the past and was not impressed by it. I made it plain and made it with buffalo sauce, but it never made it to my treasured recipe book with "need to make it again" recipes. Do you have one? You should! The treasured recipe book, that is. 

With this recipe the cast iron skillet part of the recipe as the delivery vessel caught my attention. Did you know that everything tastes better when cooked in a cast iron skillet? Studies have shown..... I'm kidding. The only study that has been done is MINE and I say that nothing cooks like cast iron skillet so just take my word for it! Cast Iron skillets deserve a post in themseves because they are passed from generation to generation and just like wine, they only get better with age. 

OK, getting back to the cauliflower.....

Place the whole cauliflower into an iron skillet and drizzle it with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt, pepper and garlic powder. I make my own Paula Dean's House Seasoning which I use every single day in my cooking. Here are the ingredients:

1 cup salt
1/4 cup black pepper
1/4 cup garlic powder

Wrap the entire skillet in aluminum foil and place it into preheated 400 degree oven for 40 minutes. Voila, dinner is ready!

My personal favorite is to break the cauliflower into pieces rather than keeping it whole. There is more surface for the brown goodness from the bottom of the pan!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Cranberry Christmas Cake

It's unbelievable that tomorrow we will be cutting turkey and off we are thrown into the Holiday season. It comes so fast and goes by even faster and although, it is the most wonderful time of the year, by January 1 I am ready to move on and take the decorations down. However, right now it's the time to take it all in and enjoy the traditions that we all have brought from different parts of the country.
I remember as a little girl, my mom would go to the forest cranberry picking. She would have a big comb with a basket at the end where she would collect the berries in. Our job would be to pick out the leaves and little twigs mixed up with the dark red berries.
Although, I was not a fan of cranberries back then, I love them now and if you are a cranberry hater this cake will sure change your mind. The mix of sweet and tart flavors totally explodes in your mouth and you seriously have to stop yourself from eating more of it.
I think it's the best when it cools a bit but it's still warm. The top is still very crunchy  and adds a wonderful texture to the cake.
No baking powder or baking soda in this recipe so I'm crossing your fingers that you have a kitchen aid mixer because there is plenty of beating involved.
Ingredients    (by Barefoot In The Kitchen)

3 eggs
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour *
12 oz fresh cranberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. With a mixer, beat the eggs with the sugar until slightly thickened and light in color, about 5-7 minutes. The mixture should almost double in size (seriously, double the size).  Add the butter and vanilla; mix two more minutes. Stir in the flour until just combined. Add the cranberries and stir to mix throughout.

Spread in a buttered 9x13 pan. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until very lightly browned and a toothpick inserted near the center of the cake comes out clean.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

In the bag

I love to bake over the holidays and pass on the goodies to friends an neighbors. Check out this video with the neat wrapping ideas with the cellophane bag, tags and some ribbon. Everything looks just so much prettier wrapped!

Monday, October 24, 2016

So very Thankful for you - coloring fall leaves

Fall colors are just amazing! I had an absolute blast coloring the leaves!! I sponged them in Cajun Craze, Pumpkin Spice, Curry and Old Olive. I even added a touch of Rose Red on the tips. You probably do recognize Vintage Leaves stamp set. Do not stamp the leaves in black! It's just too rough. I did it in Early Espresso and I felt that they blended in better. Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Sweet Holidays

It's hard to believe that we are entering this amazing time of the year! Yes, we are! I already saw a holiday commercial and heard a Christmas Carol, so there!
Except for the greeting, I did not use any stamps on this card. All you see is the holiday paper which is a part of the Candy Cane Lane DSP.

Paper in this collection is turely amazing. The colors are great, the design is great and most of all they all scream "Holiday". I HAD to add a little bit of glitter to the snow on the roof just because I HAD to.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

September 2016 Paper Pumpkin

Hello there crafters! I wanted to give you a little sneak peak of the September 2016 Paper Pumpkin. Don't forget that they have buy one month, get second free thru October 9! You can get this kit if you place an order before the end of the promotion. Meanwhile, enjoy with video!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Amazing caramels

I'm so into the holidays right now! I really want to create an assortment of amazing goodies I can give out during the holiday season and this was the first thing I tried. I wrapped the caramels in wax paper and they looked just so darn cute. So yummy and so satisfying! I made them several times and they came out great every time. I'm currently working on scotchmellows a.k.a. caramel wrapped marshmallows. I will let you know if they come out ok. If I will never mention them again, you know that they were a disaster. Do not get discouraged by detailed directions. Once you get them down, the process is very simple.
  • 1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter (1 stick)
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy cream or heavy whipping cream (36-40% butterfat content)
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) light corn syrup
  • 1 cup (200 grams) sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon course or flaked sea salt

  • Directions
    Lightly oil a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan then measure and cut a piece of parchment paper that will fit inside the pan and come up the sides by at least 1 inch. Next, lightly oil the parchment paper and place into the pan. Set the pan aside.
    Cut butter into 8 pieces then combine with heavy cream in a small microwave-safe bowl. Heat in the microwave for 1 to 2 minutes until hot and butter has melted. Set aside, we will use this later.
    In a small saucepan combine the water and corn syrup. Then, add the sugar, but try your best not to splatter the sugar up the sides of the pan. Now, use a spoon to gently stir the sugar into the water and corn syrup, just moistening the sugar. Heat over medium heat until the sugar has come to a boil. Then, cover with a lid for 1 minute. This adds steam/moisture to the pan, so any sugar that may have stuck to the sides of the pan melts and falls back into the boiling sugar. Remove lid then attach a candy thermometer to the side of the saucepan. Then, cook sugar for 5 to 10 minutes, until the sugar reaches a temperature of 320 degrees F (160 degrees C). At this temperature, the sugar will take on a light amber color around the edges of the pan.
    The moment the sugar reaches 320 degrees F (160 degrees C), carefully pour about a sixth of the butter and cream mixture then stir, using the base of the candy thermometer to incorporate it. Repeat with the remaining cream and butter (adding a sixth of it at a time then stirring). The sugar will bubble violently as you add the butter and cream - so do this carefully and slowly to prevent the mixture from bubbling over the sides of the saucepan.
    By adding the cream and butter, the temperature will drop. Now, continue cooking for another 5 to 10 minutes, until the caramel reaches a temperature of 240 degrees F (115 degrees C). This will create a soft caramel, if you want slightly harder caramels, bring the temperature closer to 245 degrees F (118 degrees C).
    The moment the caramel reaches your desired temperature, pour into the prepared loaf pan. Cool 20 to 30 minutes then scatter the salt over the caramel. Then, let the caramel cool 3 1/2 hours.
    Unmold the caramel. If the caramel is too soft to work with, place into the refrigerator 30 to 45 minutes to firm up. Then, use a large sharp knife to cut into your desired shape. We like to cut into 1-inch by 1/2-inch rectangles.
    Found it on Inspired Taste. Thanks!