Saturday, October 5, 2013

brownie batter dip {winner!!}

Brownie Batter Dip from Shalee:

8 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1/4 cup butter, softened to room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar, plus more for stiffer consistency, if needed
5 Tbsp all-purpose flour
5 Tbsp cocoa powder, regular or Dutch-process
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2-3 Tbsp milk
Chocolate Chips for garnish (optional)
Pretzels, strawberries, graham crackers, animal crackers, apples for dipping

In a large bowl, whip together the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy, 1-2 minutes. Add 2 cups of the powdered sugar. Mix well. Add the flour, cocoa powder, brown sugar, vanilla and 2 tablespoons milk. Mix until fluffy and smooth. Add additional powdered sugar and/or milk, if needed, until desired consistency is reached. The dip should be soft enough to easily dip a pretzel in without breaking it, but not so soft it spreads out instead of holding it's shape in a fluffy cloud of brownie batter goodness. garnish with chocolate chips, if desired.

caramel apple dip.

Caramel Apple Dip from Beckie:

1 block cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Whip together until smooth.

Add almost 1 bag of Heath Bar chips (I serve on the side)

I also serve this dip with GALA apples as they have a good consistency to hold a dip (sliced and sprinkled with lemon juice).

pumpkin cheesecake caramel dip.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Caramel Dip from Jenni:

2 (8oz) cream cheese, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup sour cream
1 1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 cup caramel sauce

In a kitchenaid or mixer, combine cream cheese and powdered sugar until frosting consistency.

Add pumpkin, sour cream, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Mix until it is fully incorporated.

Pour the caramel sauce on top and create a marble look by swirling with a knife.

Serve with graham crackers, cinnamon sugar pita chips or gingersnaps.

tomato basil dip.

Tomato Basil Dip from Michelle:

1 cup seeded and diced Roma tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped sun dried tomatoes
1-2 tsp minced garlic
1 cup chopped basil leaves (the amount in one regular sized package of fresh basil)
1 cup mayo (plus a little more if needed)
4 oz Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup parmesan cheese

Mix all ingredients and bake at 325 for 20-25 minutes. Serve with crustinis.

roasted red pepper dip.

Roasted Red Pepper Dip from Shauna:

1 (7 ounce) jar roasted red peppers (about 1 cup diced)
3/4 cup mayonnaise (low-fat works great)
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened (low-fat works great)
2 Tbsp minced onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
12 ounces shredded pepper jack cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. If using bottled peppers, remove them from the jar and blot the excess water with paper towels, a lot of excess moisture will affect the texture of the dip. Dice the peppers and set aside. Combine the mayonnaise, cream cheese, onion, garlic, and Dijon mustard. Add in the shredded cheese and the diced peppers. Place in an 8x8-inch (or smaller size) dish like a pie plate. At this point, you can cover it and refrigerate the uncooked dip for up to 2-3 days. Place in the oven and cook for 30-45 minutes. baking time depends on the size of the dish used. Remove from the oven when the dip is golden and bubbly on top. Serve immediately.

caramel apple dip.

Caramel Apple Dip from Ashley:

1 8 oz brick cream cheese, softened
1 container caramel sauce (approx. 16 oz)
1 pkg heath bits
granny smith apples, sliced

Mix together thoroughly the cream cheese and 2 big spoonfuls of caramel sauce spread across the bottom of 4 - 1/2 pint jars or 1 glass pie plate. Spread a layer of the remaining caramel sauce as the second layer. Sprinkle heath bits on top. Chill in fridge for a couple hours. Serve with sliced apples.

jalepeno popper dip.

Jalepeno Popper Dip from Brittany:
via yummly

6 slices bacon
2 pkgs cream cheese
1 cup mayonnaise
4-6 chopped jalapeno without seeds
1 cup cheddar cheese
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
1 cup diced green onions

1 cup of crushed crackers (I used Ritz)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 stick of butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine all of the ingredients into a medium bowl. Stir well.

Transfer to an oven proof dish. The size of the dish depends on how thick the dip is. The thicker the dip the longer it may need to warm up.

buffalo chicken dip.

Buffalo Chicken Dip from Erin:

4 boneless chicken breast, cooked and shredded
1 8 oz pkg cream cheese
12 ounces ranch dressing
12 oz Frank's RedHot sauce
1 cup chopped celery

Mix and heat in saucepan until smooth - pour over chicken - top with shredded mexican cheese - bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Serve with chips or celery.

seared chicken with avocado. {winner!}

Seared Chicken with Avocado from Shalee:

1 1/2 tsp blackened seasoning
4 (6 ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 tsp olive oil
1 diced peeled avocado
2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
1 jalepeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
2 Tbsp fresh lime juice (about 1 lime)
1 lime, cut into fourths

Sprinkle seasoning on both sides of chicken. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add chicken; cook 1 minute or until seared. Reduce heat to medium; cook 3 minutes on each side or until done.

Combine avocado and next four ingredients. Squeeze lime over chicken before serving. Top with avocado mixture.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 chicken breast half and 1/4 cup avocado mixture).

peanut chicken with nectarine salsa.

Peanut Chicken with Nectarine Salsa from Erin:

Chicken Marinade:
1/4 cup chili sauce
1/2 cup hot water
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 Tbsp vinegar
4 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp ginger
6 chicken breasts

BBQ chicken and eat with salsa.

2 nectarines, peeled and diced
1 cucumber, diced
2-4 green onions, chopped
cilantro to taste
1 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp oil
1 Tbsp vinegar
1 tsp. lemon juice

orange sorbet.

Orange Sorbet from Randi:

2 oranges peeled, halved
2 T sugar or other sweetener to taste
4 cups ice cubes

Blend and enjoy!

chocolate zucchini bread.

Chocolate Zucchini Bread from Heidi:
via Our Best Bites

2 cups flour
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
6 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup canola oil
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup sour cream
3 cups grated zucchini
3/4 cup mini chocolate chips
optional: zest from one orange

2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp white sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two loaf pans and set aside. Mix topping ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside.

With a stand or hand mixer beat oil, white sugar, brown sugar, and eggs until combined and slightly fluffy. 1-2 minutes.

Add vanilla and sour cream and mix until combined.

Gently stir in the grated zucchini (and zest if you're using).

Take a spoonful of the flour mixture and stir in with the chocolate chips (this will help them keep them evenly distributed.) If you only have regular chocolate chips, or a chocolate bar, just give it a chop so its the size of mini chocolate chips.

Add the remaining flour mixture to the batter and stir until just combined. Add chocolate chips and stir to combine.

Divide the batter between the two pans and sprinkle topping over each. Place pans on a cookie sheet for easy moving.

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 50-60 minutes. I set my timer for 45 minutes and then keep an eye on it for the remainder. When it's done a toothpick or skewer should come out clean.

Allow to cool on a rack for 5-10 minutes and then remove from the pans.

blueberry lemon cookies.

Blueberry Lemon Cookies from Melanie:

1 cup butter softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla

Mix dry ingredients
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
3 1/3 cups flour
zest of 1 lemon (could add another but I like 1)

5 oz. dried blueberries (Costco has these)
5 oz. white chocolate chips (can leave out just add more blueberries)

refrigerate 1 hour
bake 325-- not sure of the time yet 8 to 9 minutes

(my kids don't like these cookies so I take some dough and make choc. chip cookies for them).

grilled salmon with mango salsa.

Grilled Salmon with Mango Salsa from Brittany:
from Sara Gillespie

1-2 cups cantaloupe, diced
1 cup pineapple, diced
1 mango, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
Juice of 1 lime
10 sprigs of cilantro
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup green onions
1 cucumber, diced
Add salt to taste..

Prepare and Grill Salmon to your liking. We use butter, lemon, garlic, onion, salt and pepper. Top with Mango Salsa.

lemon cookies.

Lemon Cookies from Beckie:
from Sara Jezek

3 cubes imperial (brand) margarine
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 small packages lemon instant pudding
3 tsp vanilla
2-3 tsp lemon extract
1 tsp lemon zest
1 1/2 tsp soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
4 1/2 cup flour

Cream butter and sugar, pudding, eggs, extracts, sodas, and flour. Form into balls (about ping pong size). Bake 11 minutes at 350 degrees.

8 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 bag (1 lb) powdered sugar
1/2 cup lemon juice (2 lemons)

Friday, October 4, 2013

chipotle chicken skewers with creamy dipping sauce. {winner!}

Chipotle Chicken Skewers With Creamy Dipping Sauce from Randi:

Chicken Skewers
2 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 Tbsp fresh cilantro, minced
1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce, minced (to reduce spiciness, scrape out seeds prior to mincing)
2 tsp adobo sauce
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
12 bamboo or metal skewers

Creamy Dipping Sauce
3/4 cup lowfat sour cream
1/4 cup lowfat mayonnaise or Greek yogurt
1/4 cup lime juice
1/8 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp cilantro leaves, minced
2 green onions, finely chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper

Slice the chicken breasts into long, thin strips, about 1/2-inch thick. You should have right around 30 strips. In a small bowl, stir together the brown sugar, cilantro, chipotle chile, adobo sauce, salt, chili powder, garlic powder, and pepper. Toss the chicken with the brown sugar mixture coating all the pieces evenly. Cover the chicken (or place in a ziploc bag) and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 24 hours.

For the dipping sauce, in a bowl, stir all the ingredients together. Cover the mixture and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes until the flavors combine. Alternately, you can make the dipping sauce in advance and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Be sure to season the dipping sauce with additional lime juice, salt and pepper to taste before serving.

30 minutes before grilling, cover the bamboo skewers with water and soak. Skip this step if using metal skewers.

Preheat an oven broiler or grill. Weave two strips of chicken onto each skewer. Broil or grill the chicken for 5-8 minutes until cooked through, using nonstick cooking spray on a foil-lined pan if you are broiling. Serve immediately with the dipping sauce.

gingerbread made with sour cream.

Gingerbread Made With Sour Cream from Jenn:

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup molasses
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
2 large eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp fine salt
1/4 cup sour cream
3/4 cup boiling water

Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour a 9-inch square pan. Beat butter and sugar until creamy. Beat in molasses, lemon zest, then beat in eggs 1 at a time. Sift in flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and salt, stirring until blended. Stir in sour cream, then boiling water. Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake for 40-45 minutes, until a tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool cake for 20 minutes, before turning out on a cooling rack to cool completely. Then enjoy some sweetened cream, a lemon or vanilla glaze.

lemon sour cream pound cake.

Lemon Sour Cream Pound Cake from Ashley:

1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cups sour cream
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 large eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
juice and zest of one small lemon

1 cup powdered sugar
2 Tbsp milk
juice and zest from 1/2 lemon

Preheat oven to 350. In a large mixing bowl cream together butter and sugar. Mix in eggs, sour cream, vanilla and lemon juice/zest. Slowly mix in the soda and flour until smooth. Pour better into a greased or parchment paper lined bread pan and bake for 45-60 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. When cake has cooled whisk together glaze ingredients and drizzle over the top.

caramelized onion dip.

Caramelized Onion Dip from Lauren:

1-2 large sweet onions - diced
2 T butter
1 pkg. Lipton Onion Soup Mix
1 16 oz tub of sour cream (light is fine)

Sweat the diced onions over medium low heat in the butter until they are soft. Cool completely. Stir in the soup mix and sour cream. Serve with potato chips, of course!

creamy pasta salad with marinated veggies.

Creamy Pasta Salad with Marinated Veggies from Michelle:

1/2 cup Italian Dressing (I like Girhard's)
2 cup cherry tomato halves
1 cup sliced cucumber
1 cup sliced mushroom
1/4 lb salami or pepperoni cut into thin strips
3/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup (1 oz) grated romano (or parmesan)
1/4 cup sliced green onion
2 cups wide egg noodles (or 4 cups if more salad is needed)

Pour dressing over tomatoes, cucumbers, mushrooms, pepperoni and marinate over night. Combine sour cream, cheese and onions-pour over noodles. May combine or leave separately (putting noddles on plate and then spooning marinade mixture over the top.)

banana bars with cream cheese frosting

Banana Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting from Shalee:

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup mashed ripe bananas

1 pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
3-4 cups powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 10x15 inch jellyroll pan. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then stir in the sour cream and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt; stir into the batter. Finally mix in the mashed banana. Spread evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven. Until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow bars to cool completely before frosting with teh cream cheese frosting.

strawberry flowers.

Strawberry Flowers from Brittany:

2 lbs fresh strawberries, medium to large work best
2 (3 oz.) pkg. softened cream cheese
1/4 cup powdered sugar - add more if not sweet enough
4 oz. sour cream
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1/8 tsp. almond extract
1/2 tsp lemon juice

Wash strawberries. Cut stem end off to lay flat. Cut opposite end into quarters, don't cut all the way through. Set aside.

In a small bowl combine cream cheese, sour cream , powdered sugar, lemon juice and extracts. Beat on medium speed of mixer until fluffy. Spoon mixture into pastry bag with a star tip. Squeeze the mixture into the middle of the strawberry. Repeat. Chill for at least one hour.

*You can also dip the tips in white chocolate