Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Recipes, Recipes, Recipes...

Fall is in the air! I made this recipe adapted from Allrecipes but I made a few “tweaks” to keep it real. I thoroughly enjoyed making and spending the time doing it. To begin, prepare for a long afternoon... pumpkins take a little over an hour to bake and puree. The cheesecake itself takes almost an hour to cook, then it should cool for at least 3 hours/

Pumpkin Puree (1 hour)

1 pie pumpkin:

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).
Cut pumpkin into small manageable pieces and cut off pith and seeds.
Place cut pumpkin skin side up in a large roasting pan.
Add 1/4 inch of water and bake uncovered for 1 hour or until tender.

Remove from oven and allow pumpkin to cool.
When cooled, cut away skin and mash or puree.
Use ½ cup in cream cheese mixture.

After pumpkins come out...

Graham Cracker Crust (10 minutes)

16 graham crackers
¼ cup butter

Crush graham crackers, melt butter and mix. Then press mixture evenly into pie pan.
Bake at 325 degrees for 8 minutes

While crust is baking...

Cheesecake filling (35-40 minutes)

2 8oz cream cheese (I used 1/3 less fat)
½ cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
½ cup pumpkin puree
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp cloves, nutmeg, allspice (total)
½ cup frozen whipped topping, thawed (I used lite)

Use a mixer to cream together cream cheese, vanilla and sugar. Add eggs 1 at a time. Separate 1 cup of mixture. Spread remaining batter into baked graham cracker crust.
When pumpkin puree is cooled, mix ½ cup to the 1 cup of cream cheese mixture. Add cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, allspice.
Gently pour/spread pumpkin mixture on top of existing crust and cream cheese filling.
Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.
Remove from oven when the middle has set up. Let cool in fridge for 3 hours or overnight.

Newest Recipe Coming!!!!
I don't measure or go by the book so that is why it is still coming:)
I experimented with celery and potatoes and got cookin'.

Peanut Chicken Stir Fry

My roommate and I tried to make something different one night. I had some hot pot packets in my cupboard and decided to use them as our dipping sauce. We fried up some chicken in peanut oil, mixed stir fry veggies, added some hoison sauce, chili paste and green onions.

Here is the list, no measurements allowed! I don't measure:)

peanut oil
mixed stir fry veggies or veggies of choice
fresh garlic
chili peppers
soy sauce
hot pot packets for dipping
creamy peanut butter for sauce (yes, peanut butter:)

Any choice of rice (I used couscous! it's faster)

Cucumber Salad

Got cucumbers coming out of your ears? This recipe uses 2 cucumbers and 1 cup measurements of all ingredients. I got this recipe after going to my grandparents house last Sunday; as I was leaving, my grandpa handed me two cucumbers from the garden. I thought I would experiment on my grandma's age old recipe:

1 cup plain yogurt
1 cup apple cider vinegar and safflower, grape seed or vegetable oil (add more according to consistency)
dill to taste
10-15 drops stevia or 1-1/2 cup sugar
1/2 white onion

slice onions into rings
slice cucumbers thinly
add remaining ingredients and allow to marinate overnight.

Tuna Pasta Salad

I made this in about 20 minutes one night about 10:30 pm. Creativity happens after 10 pm in my house:) I used all that I had in the cabinet... including Hungarian hot peppers ;)

egg noodles
canned tuna
white onion
white and black pepper
season salt
sea salt
olive oil 

Boil water to make egg noodles
rinse with cold water to stop cooking
add chopped carrots, peppers, celery and onions
add garlic, season salt, sea salt, black pepper, parsley
Mix together with olive oil

Farmer's Market Chinese Cuisine

After shopping around Farmer's Market this morning, I got some Asian eggplant, a Hungarian pepper, tomato, green beans, and white onion. I decided to make my own version of Di San Xian a Northeastern Chinese dish of potatoes, peppers and eggplant... but I left out the potatoes and replaced them with green beans.
¼ chopped white onion
2-3 T peanut oil
1-2 Hungarian yellow peppers
1-2 servings fresh green beans
1 clove garlic, chopped/pressed
2 Asian eggplant
1 medium tomato
a sprinkle of Szechuan pepper corns
dash of salt
1 t Chili paste
1 T Hoisin Sauce
a drizzling of sesame oil (opt)

Saute pepper, onion and garlic in peanut oil. 
Set aside in separate pan. Begin boiling green beans. Saute eggplant (sliced) until brownish. Add Szechuan pepper corns and a dash of salt. Combine peppers, onions, garlic and eggplant in the same pan. Add chopped tomatoes, chili paste and hoisin sauce. Let simmer.

Serve eggplant dish over a bed of green beans. Drizzle sesame oil over before serving.