Saturday, August 30, 2008

Sweet Potato Pie

So tonight I was invited to a wonderful Pot Luck Dinner, although there wasn't much dinner type foods. It was more potatoes and desserts. Having never been to one myself, I assumed everyone brings side dishes and main dishes and completely neglects my favorite meal: dessert. So I made something that disguises itself as a side dish AND as a dessert. Sneaky, I am. Turns out everyone had the same idea I did! It's cool. I tried some AWESOME stuff and will try to replicate. Next time, I'm going to make Chicken salad :)

Unfortunately I don't have my camera charger/USB cable, so I didn't take any pictures of the outcome. I used This Recipe

Sweet Potato Pie

1 (1 pound) sweet potato
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust

  1. Boil sweet potato whole in skin for 40 to 50 minutes, or until done. Run cold water over the sweet potato, and remove the skin.Uh no. I peeled the sweet potatoes and diced them into about 3 inch circles. This cuts down on cooking time. Also, how impossible must it be to take the skin off something that's that soft?
  2. Break apart sweet potato in a bowl. Add butter, and mix well with mixer. Stir in sugar, milk, eggs, nutmeg, cinnamon and vanilla. Beat on medium speed until mixture is smooth. Pour filling into an unbaked pie crust.
  3. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 55 to 60 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Pie will puff up like a souffle, and then will sink down as it cools.

OUTCOME: The pie was very good. I Don't think it was as good as the recipe I normally use, which I can't find at the moment. The pie was creamy, but not as sweet as I am use too (which may be a good thing). Now the kicker for this pie (ESPECIALLY ON THANKSGIVING) Is to add Jumbo marshmallows on top of the pie, let the marshmallows have a nice light brown before taking them out. That's what this pie was missing.

Image used from here

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Stephen Mayper's Pistacho Cake

This cake was made for me by a really good friend for my birthday this year. I asked him for the recipe to make this cake for my mom's birthday. So here we go:
Pistacho Cake:
1 box yellow cake mix
1 pkg pistachio pudding jello mix
4 eggs
1 stick melted butter
8 oz sour cream or plain yogurt (I Opted for Sour Cream)
1/4 cup canola oil (Used Sunflower Oil because i couldn't find canola in the house)

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting (Not part of the original recipe, but added on because every cake needs frosting!)
1 8oz package of soften creamcheese
3 cups confectionary sugar
1 cup sweetened cocoa powder

Just mix everything in a big bowl, sprinkle cinnamon sugar in your greased pan, pour 1/2 batter, pour a thicker layer of cinnamon sugar, the rest of the batter, and some more cinnamon sugar.

it was quite a thick batter, not what I'm use to making.

to be extra special I added a heart for my mom's birthday!

This cake is insanely good. It's a heavier cake, so one to two pieces in one sitting. But for cake enthusiats it goes fast. The frosting was INSANE. I basically altered a vanilla recipe, hoping that the ratio of chocolate would be alright. It totally was. I only wish I had gotten to pipe more designs on the cake.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Mini Cheesecake Cupcakes

So this is actually a dessert! Sadly I made these a while ago, but I loved them so much and I stumbled on the recipe again, I had to post it.

Mini Cheesecakes
2 (8 oz.) block cream cheese
2 eggs
1 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Oreo Cookies

1. Soften cream cheese to room temperature.
2. Mix cream cheese, eggs, sugar and vanilla together until smooth.
3. Place 1 whole oreo in bottom of foil cup, fill 3/4 full with cheese mixture (approximately 2 dozen).
4. Place cups on large cookie sheet, bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes.
5. Refrigerate until served. Optional: Top with pie filling or fruit of your choice. (I opted for the Kiwi and Strawberry)

Overall: These are such a wonderful dessert. If I remember they weren't heavy when you ate them. But man were they addicting. The oreo at the bottom added a nice base and flavor for the cupcake. I sadly don't have any pictures without the wrappers on them. I suppose if you wanted to be health concious, you could use low fat cream cheese or something.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Restaurant Review!

Restaurant: P.F.Changs
Price: $15 on avg per person.

So I've never been to this place, but my grandparents gave my sister and I a gift card to eat there. I got the Dali Chicken, which apparently was sliced golden yukon potatos and chicken marinated in a chili garlic sauce, or something spicy! Loren got a bowl of Hot and Sour soup and Holy fuck was it big. Nicole (Loren's friend) tagged along and orderd the CHopped Chicken salad.

Then we ordered Cheesecake...

Overall the food and atmosphere was wonderful. Having never been, I know I will go back. I kinda thought it was the chinese equivelant to Cheesecake Factory... at least the share the same decorator!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Orange Chicken Dinner

Today was an intense day in the kitchen. After a failed cookie experiment, I decided to make dinner for the Fam. My mom and step dad have been working really hard remodeling a townhouse we have to rent out by wednesday. So I used this recipe (with variations)

The flavor of the chicken was awesome, I would seriously be content to have this chicken with mashed potatoes and peas. For the vegetables we used sauteed onions and carrots, and canned peas and corn. Not really a fan of the veggies, but the carrots and onions were good. It wasn't my idea to put in the corn and peas, but whatever. Add in the Pad Thai noodles we had, and it was good. I don't really like the texture of pad thai though, so for me I mainly picked at the chicken. Also, we didn't use peanut oil or oyster stock. I like using things in the panty, and keeping the grocery bill to a minimum.

I would definetly make this chicken again, but only the chicken!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Peach Cobbler.... or Crisp?

So I bought store made pie crusts, waiting to make this dinner, but every time I've gone to make it, we've been missing a key ingredient. So this morning I decided to improvse a Peach Cobbler... or Crisp. I'm not sure the difference. Actually I think it's both.

To the right are the ingredients I played with:

1 Store Bought Pie Crust
1 Can Sliced Peaches
1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Flour
1 tsp Nutmeg & Cinnamon

Directions: Take the pie crust out of the freezer to thaw for 10 minutes (or however long the direction say on the back of the package).

In a medium Mixing bowl, combine Sugar, Flour, Nutmeg & Cinnamon (Looking back, I would have cut the cup of sugar and tried half brown sugar and half white sugar... just to see). Cut in about 1/3 cup butter. You want it to look coarse, it's suppose to be a crust.

Drain the peaches and dump them into the pie shell, spreading them out on one layer... then add the crisp mix ontop.

See? Easy right? Put in a 375 Oven for about 30 minutes....

Cooking away....

Overall: Sadly, the crisp wasn't crispy enough. I think I put too much butter in. Also, I would have seasoned the peaches themselves then they were drained with some cinnamon and nutmeg, maybe some vanilla. I really wanted to make a spiced peach cobbler/crisp, but I was too impatient to search for the spice that did that! It tastes alright, nothing spectacular.