January 27, 2013


After posting my chili recipe I HAVE to share my recipe for cornbread. Before I share my recipe I have to give credit to the person who so kindly shared this recipe with us though, Brianna S. THANK YOU :-) I will never make corn bread from a box again!

2 cups Bisquick
6 TBS cornmeal
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 cup milk (I use lactose free without a problem)

1/2 cup butter, melted


Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9x9 square baking pan.

Combine dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, set aside. Whisk eggs and milk together in a smaller bowl. Add egg mixture to the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Add melted butter and stir to incorporate evenly. Pour into prepared baking pan. Bake 35-40 minutes.


January 24, 2013

Thai Turkey Wraps

I have been a so distracted with getting my finals finished for my last College level math class that I haven't had the time to do any picture taking during my cooking. My math class is done and over with and I think I can now focus on more pleasant things LOL

Can you believe we hit a record high here in Tucson yesterday?! It was a solid 80F!!! Thankfully though those digits have disappeared again today. It's actually cold and raining right now, which I am very happy about because I was absolutely not ready for the heat hiking up our thermostats just quite yet. I believe the weather has even predicted snow for the beginning of next week....we will see anything below 70 works for me at least until after Easter.

So with the past few days being a tad bit too warm for me I decided to have a cold dinner. Thai Turkey Wraps is what i decided on. I have made these before and we really enjoyed them....easy, fresh and quick.

Preparing the dressing...this smells so good!

This is one of our favorites from Trader Joes but if you don't have a Trader Joes around you don't hesitate to use another brand of Asian dressing.

Adding coleslaw to the dressing

End product.
Please don't mind my picture taking skills...still working on perfecting that part ;-)

Thai Turkey Wraps:

2 TBS creamy peanut butter
2 TBS mayonnaise
2 TBS Asian Toasted Sesame Dressing (such as Kraft or Trader Joe's)
1/2 tsp hot sauce
2 cups coleslaw mix (you can either make your own or buy the blend in the bag)
4 tortillas (6 inch)
16 slices of lean turkey slices

**I like adding a bit of chopped green bell peppers and green onions too....but this is optional tastes great without it**


Whisk together peanut butter, mayonnaise, asian dressing and hot sauce. Add coleslaw; toss to coat well. Then layer your tortilla with turkey then coleslaw mix; roll up. EAT!! told you it was quick and easy!!

**you can add more of any of these ingredients to your preference, I like add a little more dressing and coleslaw**

January 15, 2013

Stephanie's Chili

Who doesn't like to eat a nice hot bowl of chili on a cold day or even during a football game?! I love chili and I love making it. My husband and I have tried many different varieties of making our chili from scratch. After many attempts I have finally found the perfect blend of beans, ground turkey, tomatoes and just enough spices that it doesn't burn your taste-buds away but still brings the punch of flavor.

Some days when I make my chili I use 1 pound of ground turkey and on others I use 2, it just all depends what mood I am in....and what I have in the fridge.

When it comes to tomatoes in chili I am a little picky about the size of the pieces in my chili. I am not a tomato fan as it is but I know they are good for you and they taste good in certain recipes (not everything) but are a must in chili. So to fix the problem of the size I toss the stewed tomatoes in my food processor and pulse them a few times until the large pieces are just perfect, not completely macerated but small enough so you aren't biting into huge chunks.

Another great thing about my chili recipe is that you can control how spicy you make it and if you aren't a spicy eater you won't be sacrificing flavor for the loss of heat. During our last pregnancy spicy was not a friend of mine so I had to adjust the heat and it was just as yummy.  The Rotel tomatoes are my secret ("were") interchangeable heat adjusting ingredient

1-2 lbs ground turkey 
1 medium onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, minced 
2 TBS chili powder
1 TBS cumin
2 cans kidney beans, drained & rinsed
2 cans black beans, drained & rinsed
1 can italian style stewed tomatoes
1 can mexican style stewed tomatoes
2 cans Rotel tomato ( I use 1x original & 1x Hot)
salt & pepper, to taste 

Brown turkey along with the onions and garlic.                              
While the turkey is browning drain and rinse your beans, set aside. Then get your stewed tomatoes pulsed to your preference (this step is optional if you don't mind larger pieces of tomato in your chili).
Do not drain juices before stirring in chili powder, cumin into the browned turkey.

Add the stewed tomatoes and Rotel stir.

Now add the beans, stir and then cover and bring to a boil. Then lower the heat to keep the chili at a low and slow simmer. I simmer my chili at least 2 hours stirring constantly throughout the cooking time to prevent any sticking or burning. After the 2 hours are over take a little taste and add salt & pepper to your taste. I usually just add a dash of salt and pepper, not too much. 

Chili is now ready to serve!! I like to eat mine with a bit of greek yogurt (since I can't do sour cream) and tortilla chips or with cornbread. I have a cornbread recipe that is easy to make and is very much enjoyed by everyone in my family.

January 11, 2013

Question of the Week #1

Today I am going to answer a few questions about flour....there are many different kinds for many different reasons. Pastry flour, cake flour, all purpose, whole wheat flour, bread flour and self-rising. I am going to cover the basic information like....what is pastry flour? What if I don't have whole wheat flour? Is there a substitute for cake flour? Does using bread flour really make a difference? What is in self-rising flour?........BUT please if you have any specific questions in regards of flour ASK!! 
If you ask me something that I did not cover not only will you learn something but it will also give me the chance to learn more too :-)

All purpose:
This is your most commonly used flour. All purpose can be used in so many different ways and in both cooking & baking. All purpose flour is one of the key components when making a roux for a stew or soup.

Self-rising flour:
As the name says it it rises without the need to add additional leavening agent (like yeast or baking powder). Typically self-rising flour can be used in recipes for scones, biscuits or muffins. You can substitute all-purpose flour for self-rising flour but I would suggest pulsing it a few times your food processor or sieving at least 3 times before adding to your mixing bowl, this loosen the flour up and will help prevent the mixture from getting to tough.

Here is the recipe to make your own self-rising flour:

1 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Pastry flour:
This type of flour is not used as commonly as some of the others. Pastry flour has a higher gluten content which helps the dough be more elastic and holds up better in recipes that require a little more processing like when making croissants, pie crusts or puff pastry. Pastry flour can be made by mixing cake flour and all purpose flour but should never be substituted with either cake flour or all purpose flour alone, it will create tough dough.

Recipe to make your own pastry flour:

2 cups all purpose flour
2/3 cups cake flour

Cake flour:
Cake flour is commonly used in recipes that do not need to rise much. This is because of the low protein content so less gluten is formed while mixing the batter. Low protein/ low gluten means finer and softer crumbs. Cake flour can be substituted in any cake recipe that calls for all purpose flour. Since cake flour is much lighter then all purpose flour you should always sift cake flour before adding it to your mixing bowl, this will help prevent clumping.

If you do not have cake flour on hand, substitute it with this mixture (this equals 1 cup of cake flour):
1 cup all purpose minus 2 TBS

If you want to use cake flour instead of all purpose in a cake recipe:
1 cup cake flour plus 2 TBS for every cup of all purpose flour called for in a recipe.

Whole wheat flour:
When it comes to using whole wheat flour it is very important to avoid over-mixing, over-mixing will form more gluten which can make the dough tougher and chewier. I would also suggest sifting your flour, this will help prevent clumping and adds air to the flour. Depending on what you are preparing you can substitute half of your white flour with whole wheat flour. ***I personally have not had much luck with using only whole wheat flour in recipes, way to tough and not very tasty***

Bread flour:
Bread flour has the most protein content when compared to other flours, this is best when using yeast in a recipe. The higher the protein the more glutens is created during the kneading process. The more gluten the lighter and chewier the bread will be. Bread flour is not really a type of flour that can easily substituted and which I do not recommend in doing either. Bread flour is also used quite often when making bread in a bread maker. *I use bread flour to make cinnamon rolls too* So if bread flour is called for then use bread flour don't replace it with a different flour.....that is just my opinion ;-)

January 7, 2013

The start of "Question of the Week"

Thanks to a good friend of mine I have decided to add another segment to my blog. I want to do a "Question of the Week"....you post questions and I will answer them! Your questions could be anything about cooking or baking such as which oil to use, dry herbs vs fresh, shiny baking sheets vs black, what is a certain ingredient (does everyone know what a gooseberry is?) or how to prepare a certain ingredient the easiest or most efficient way. These are just few things that came to mind but don't feel limited to my ideas.....ask away!!! Remember the old saying "the only dumb question is the one you don't ask" so please don't hesitate to ask.