Category: Weekend Cooking

Jalapeno-Bacon Skillet Cornbread

This bread is soooo very good. My hubby and I just kept going back for more and more. If you got a bite of jalapeno it had some kick, but otherwise it was definitely not spicy. This is a very big serving of cornbread so I would freeze half or make sure you are going to have a lot guests in the next few days. Do not pass this recipe up.

Special Tools: Cast Iron Skillet

WWSPoints: 22 points

Make/Serves: 6

Active: 20 min

Total: 40 min (plus cooling)

1 cup yellow cornmeal
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon kosher salt
6 slices bacon, finely chopped
½ sweet onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 large eggs
1 ½ cups buttermilk
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly, plus more for the skillet if needed
¼ cup honey
2 to 3 jalapeno peppers, seeded and diced
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Whisk the cornmeal, all-purpose flour, cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl; set aside.
  2. Put the bacon in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet; set over medium heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is browned and crisp, 7 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate, leaving the fat in the skillet.
  3. Add the diced onion to the hot skillet and cook, stirring, until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 1 more minute. Transfer the onion and garlic to a separate plate and set aside. Keep the skillet over low heat.
  4. Whisk the eggs, buttermilk, melted butter, honey and jalapenos in another large bowl; add the onion and garlic and whisk to combine. Add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture and mix with a wooden spoon until combined (do not overmix).
  5. Brush the bottom and side of the skillet with the fat left in it (add a pat or two of butter if there’s not enough). Carefully add the batter (it should sizzle) and sprinkle the bacon evenly on top. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the top is deep golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes before serving.

Now Let’s Dish: OMG! This is so good. Not too dense and not to crumbly. Overall so delicious. Feel free to drizzle with some honey for some sweetness but it is in no way necessary. I do have to admit, I need some help when the pan is full. It is incredibly heavy. Since the recipe called for 6 pieces of bacon I cooked the other half to use for the Brussels Sprouts I was making for dinner. I always recommend cooking a whole batch of bacon, even if a recipe calls or less. Opened bacon turns too fast. I highly recommend trying this recipe!! Worth every minute.

From: Food Network Magazine, November 2014

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/jalapeno-bacon-skillet-cornbread-3363747

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Buttermilk Pancakes

These pancakes were really easy to make and really yummy. It is a more savory pancake which was good because that pure maple syrup you see was no joke.

Special Tools: Large Skillet

WWSPoints: 16 Points

Serves: 4 (about 12 pancakes)

Active: 25 min

Total: 25 min.

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup whole-wheat flour

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 3/4 cups buttermilk

1 1/2 teaspoons sugar

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for topping

Vegetable oil, for the skillet

Maple syrup, for topping

  1. Whisk the all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl.
  2. Whisk the eggs, buttermilk and sugar in a large bowl until foamy, then stir in the melted butter. Add the flour mixture and stir until just combined. (The batter will be thick; it’s OK if there are a few lumps.)
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat until hot. Lightly brush with vegetable oil. Drop a heaping 1/4 cupful of batter into the skillet for each pancake and spread into a 4-to-5-inch round with the back of a spoon. Cook until the bubbles on top burst and the edges begin browning, about 4 minutes. Flip and cook until golden brown, 2 to 3 more minutes. Repeat with the remaining batter, brushing the skillet with more vegetable oil between batches. Serve with butter and syrup.

Now Let’s Dish: A pancake is a pancake that is a pancake? Well kind of. These were a little grainier and savory as opposed to super fluffy and sweet. I do prefer a buttery savory pancake as opposed to a super sweet one but our household is split 50/50 in that way. These are also pretty dense so I do not feel that 3 is necessary so if the point value is throwing you off, 1 or 2 pancakes should be enough.

I served them with breakfast sausage, eggs and a very, very rich pure maple syrup.

Reference: Food Network Magazine, April 2014

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchen/buttermilk-pancakes-3362784

 

Garlic Butta Hot Wings

Garlic Butta Hot Wings

Wowzah! These are super hot. I mean, they taste delicious but I couldn’t eat more than two and my hubby ate about 4 and I have no idea how. There were no shirts being offered and my pic wasn’t going on a wall so 2 was enough for me. If you love spicy food, these have a great flavor!

WWSPoints: 11 points*

Makes: 4-6 servings

Total: 1 hr 40 min

1 tablespoon granulated garlic

1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon mustard powder

1 tablespoon freshly cracked black pepper

1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper

2 teaspoons ground cumin

4 pounds chicken wings, tips removed

For the sauce:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 2 cloves)

1 jalapeno pepper, minced (remove seeds for less heat)

1 12 -ounce bottle hot pepper sauce

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 tablespoon white vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

 

Directions

Prepare the wings: In a large bowl, combine the granulated garlic, cayenne pepper, mustard powder, black pepper, white pepper and cumin. Remove and reserve 2 tablespoons of the spice mixture for the sauce.

Rinse the wings and pat dry. Add to the bowl with the remaining spice mixture and toss to coat well. Lay the wings on a baking sheet, loosely cover and refrigerate 1 to 2 hours.

Preheat a grill to medium high with direct and indirect heat (on a gas grill, turn off the burners on one side; on a charcoal grill, bank the coals to one side). Cook the wings over direct heat, turning, until they are good and crispy on both sides, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer to the cooler side of the grill and cook, turning frequently, until cooked through, 8 to 10 more minutes.

Meanwhile, make the sauce: In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the olive oil, garlic and jalapeno. Saute 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add the reserved 2 tablespoons spice mixture and the hot sauce. Bring to a simmer, then add the butter, vinegar and lime juice and stir until the butter melts. Keep warm until ready to serve. Put the wings in a large bowl, pour in the sauce and toss.

Now Let’s Dish– As I said before, this is HOT! I liked that this recipe uses a grill. Usually when I think of wings I do not think of grilling but it worked and worked well. I would not mind trying this method again with a milder sauce. I think I may try the same recipe but find ways to greatly decrease the spice without decreasing the flavor.

Recipe from Food Network Magazine

*Points based on adding ingredient points and dividing by servings.

New York Strips & Gorgonzola Butter

New York Strips with Gorgonzola Butter

Easy, rich and delicious. A perfect Saturday on the grill meal. See below for more notes

WWSPoints: 19 Points*

Serves: 4

Prep: 15 minutes

Chill: 1 hour

Grill: 10 minutes

2 Tbsp. crumbled Gorgonzola cheese or other blue cheese

2 Tbsp. cream cheese spread with chives and onion

1 to 2 Tbsp. butter, softened

1 Tbsp. chopped pine nuts or walnuts, toasted*

4 boneless beef top loin (strip) steaks, cut 1 inch thick (about 3 pounds)

Salt

  1. For Gorgonzola butter, in a small bowl stir together Gorgonzola cheese, cream cheese, butter, and nuts. Shape mixture into a 1-inch-diameter log. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill about 1 hour or until firm.
  2. Trim fat from steaks. Sprinkle steaks lightly with salt. For a charcoal grill, grill steaks on the rack of an uncovered grill directly over medium coals to desired doneness, turning once halfway through grilling. Allow 10 to 12 minutes for medium (160 F). (For a gas grill, preheat grill. Reduce eat to medium. Place steaks on grill rack over heat. Cover; grill as directed.)
  3. To serve, cut butter into eight slices. Place two slices on each steak.

Dish with Love- This was delicious steak. Only two adults enjoying this meal and I think it is better that way. Don’t think our kids would have enjoyed this meal, especially because there was a conversation very recently on the “grossness of blue cheese”. The prep for the steaks is really minimal and making the butter was so super easy that it left me with a lot of time to make my sides.

I served this with Olive Garden-like Breadsticks, Grilled Artichokes, and Parmesan Smashed Potatoes. It was a huge meal but hey that’s what Saturday’s are for.

Recipe from: Grill It! 2012

nystripsgorgonzolagrilledartichokes,smashedparm,olivegarden

Emeril Lagasse’s Prosciutto & Mozzarella Panini

 

Emeril Lagasse’s Prosciutto and Mozzarella Panini

Yummmmy and rich.

WWS Points: Approximately 13 points*

Makes: 4 sandwiches

Active: 15 min.

Total: 15 min.

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar

2 tsp. minced fresh oregano, or 1 tsp dried

1 tsp. minced garlic

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

8 ½-inch-thick slices ciabatta or other rustic Italian white bread

4 ou. thinly sliced mozzarella cheese

4 ou. thinly sliced prosciutto

6 ou. jarred roasted red peppers, drained and torn into 1-inch-wide pieces

  1. Whisk the olive oil, oregano, garlic, ½ tsp salt and ¼ tsp pepper in a small bowl to blend.
  2. Arrange the slices of bread on a flat work surface and spread the vinaigrette on one side of each slice. Divide the mozzarella equally among 4 of the bread slices. Top with the prosciutto and roasted red peppers, then place the 4 remaining slices of bread on top, vinaigrette-side down, to form 4 sandwiches.
  3. Heat a grill pan over medium heat. Add the sandwiches and cook, pressing them occasionally with a large spatula or the bottom of a small heavy saucepan, until the bread is golden brown and the cheese has melted, about 4 minutes per side.

Now Let’s Dish: This sandwich has a lot of flavor, a lot. I would not be too generous on the vinaigrette. Prosciutto is a really strong deli meat and the peppers do add a touch of necessary sweetness already. Our ciabatta was rounded which I felt made it a lot trickier to get an even cook. Next time I think we would enjoy the rustic Italian bread.

I served this with a “kind-of-Cob” salad. A delicious Sunday lunch!

WW Tips- This sandwich is rich and filling enough to eat just half with a salad or a cup of soup. Don’t ever forget the value of low point fillers like soup and salad.

Reference: Food Network Magazine May 2010

*The WW Points were figured out by adding up the point value of the ingredients and dividing by the serving size.

emerillagassesprosciuttoandmozzarellapaniniCOB

Double Cheese Eggs Benedict

doublecheeseeggsbenedict

Double Cheese Eggs Benedict

This has got to be the easiest Eggs Benedict I have ever made. It is definitely the easiest way to make poached eggs as well. My hubby loves Eggs Benedict and bacon so this recipe was a hit. The best part, I only made this for the two of us so I have enough leftovers for a couple of weekday breakfast sandwiches. See below recipe for more notes.

WWSPoints: 10 points Approximately*

Serves: 8 servings

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 20 mins

2 Tbsp. butter

2 Tbsp. + 1-1/2 tsp. all-purpose flour

1-1/2 cups milk

¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese

2 Tbsp. shredded Parmesan cheese

½ tsp. Dijon mustard

1/8 tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. white pepper

POUCHED EGGS:

1 tsp. white vinegar

8 cold eggs

4 English muffin, split and toasted

8 slices Canadian bacon, warmed

8 bacon strips, cooked & crumbled

  1. For cheese sauce, in a saucepan, melt butter. Stir in flour until smooth; gradually add the milk. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thicken.   Reduce heat to medium-low. Add the cheese, mustard, salt and pepper, stirring until cheese is melted. Cover and keep warm.
  2. In a skillet with high sides, bring 2-3 inches of water and vinegar to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer gently. For each egg, break the cold egg into a custard cup or saucer. Hold the dish close to the water surface and slip the egg into simmering water.
  3. Cook 4 eggs at a time, uncovered, for 3-5 minutes or until the whites are completely set and the yolks begin to thicken. With a slotted spoon, remove each egg. Repeat with remaining eggs.
  4. To assemble, top each muffin half with 1 slice Canadian bacon, 1 egg, cheese sauce and bacon.

 

Now Let’s Dish: Since there was only 2 of us eating this dish I only made 3 eggs. I still made the whole pack of bacon though because it is always nice to have cooked bacon around and I am not a fan of how raw bacon saves after the pack is opened. My husband never minds this of course.

Sunday is also weekday lunch prep day so I made pasta for the kids lunch while I was making this. It was pretty interesting to have the sauce burner, the egg burner, the Canadian bacon burner, the pasta burner and the bacon in the oven all at once. It still turned out pretty darn good but I strongly advise you’re on your toes the day you make this. TV- No, Good Upbeat Music- Heck yah. I believe I had UB40 genre playing.

Bacon makin’- We are in a household of crispy bacon eaters, except me I am not picky on my bacon. I have made it many, many different ways but I think my favorite is covering the pan in foil, placing bacon in cold oven. Turn the oven to 400 and cook for 20 mins. Turns out crispy and delicious. Mmmmm Bacon.

What else did I get out of this? I got extra English muffins, bacon and Canadian bacon. I am going to make breakfast sandwiches using my black & decker breakfast sandwich maker. I will make bacon sandwich with cheese on Monday & Canadian bacon & cheese on Tuesday. I am making brussel sprouts for dinner tomorrow night so I will most likely add the rest of the bacon to those.

Reference: THE COOKBOOK: tasteofhome

*I had to guess the sugar in the recipe to figure out points. I guessed 10 grams.

French Toast Pigs in Blankets

frenchtoastpigsinblankets

This was a filling a yummy breakfast. I did alter half of the recipe to have no sugar or cinnamon because of us does not like cinnamon. It was delicious either way. I made scrambled eggs on the side and it turned out to be a great combination.

WWSPoints: 9 Approximately*

Serves: 12 pieces

Active: 20 mins

Total: 40 mins

12 pork breakfast sausage links (about 14 ounces)

6 large eggs

¾ cup milk

¼ cup granulated sugar

¼ tsp. ground cinnamon

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

Pinch of kosher salt

12 slices potato bread or country white bread (we used country white)

4 Tbsp. unsalted butter

Confectioner sugar, for topping

Maple Syrup for dipping

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the sausages on the baking sheet and bake until lightly browned and cooked through, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside; reduce the oven temperature to 200.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs, milk, granulated sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a large bowl. Trim each slice of break into a 2-by-4-in. rectangle, then flatten slightly with your fingertips. Starting at a short end, roll each piece of break around a sausage, pressing firmly to seal. Transfer to the bowl with the egg mixture and soak 5 minutes.
  3. Melt 2 Tbsp. in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. When it begins to brown and foam add 6 of the bread wrapped sausages and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Remove to a paper towel-lined baking sheet and keep warm in the oven. Wipe out the skillet add the remaining 2 tbsp. butter and repeat with the remaining 6 sausages. Dust with confectioners sugar and serve with maple syrup.

Now Lets Dish- First things first, I made the first 6 without sugar, nutmeg & cinnamon, because our oldest doesn’t like cinnamon. I added half the sugar, nutmeg & cinnamon after the first 6. They were both delicious in their own way.

The recipe calls for soaking for 5 minutes but I advise against it. The first batch was too “eggy” and soggy being in the eggs mixture that long. The second batch that soaked for 3 mins were exactly how I had originally anticipated.  

Reference: Food Network Magazine December 2013

*Points figured out by adding up ingredients points and dividing by servings