Monthly Archives: October 2011

Frozen Hot Chocolate: Tasty Kitchen

It snowed at our house today…really??? It’s not even November yet.  So, needless to say it was cold today. You might be asking yourself…Frozen?? hot chocolate. Well I’m not a hot drink kinda gal, for some reason those drinks don’t sit very well with my tummy so I thought this is the perfect way to enjoy a nice cup of hot cocoa.

It’s a knock off recipe from the famous restaurant, Serendipity so I knew it was going to be good…and it was DELICIOUS!!!  We drank our in a matter of minutes.  So enjoy a cold/hot drink for a cool (or hot) day.


  • 3 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar
  • 1 package Hot Cocoa Mix (about 3 Tablespoons)
  • 2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
  • ⅓ cups Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • ⅓ cups White Chocolate Chips
  • 12 ounces, fluid Can Evaporated Milk, Divided
  • 4-½ cups Ice
  • Whipped Cream, To Taste
  • Mini Marshmallows, To Taste

Combine sugar, cocoa mix, and butter in the top of a double boiler that is set over gently boiling water. Stir often until melted and a smooth paste forms. Add semi-sweet & white chocolate chips; stir. When chips begin to melt, slowly stir in 1/2 cup of evaporated milk. Stir until smooth. Cool to room temperature.

Combine the chocolate base mixture, the remaining evaporated milk and ice in a blender (you can do this in batches) and cover. Blend until smooth. Pour into frosty glasses. Top each with whipped cream. Sprinkle with additional chopped chocolate chips & mini marshmallows, if desired.


Bowtie Pasta with Asparagus: Samantha

Loved this.  I made it last week.  I have another asparagus pasta on here and I like this one better….as did my husband and son.   Enjoy!

1 pkg. bow tie pasta

1/2 c. (1 cube) butter (the real stuff)

2-3 cloves garlic, minced

3/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese

1-2 chicken bouillon cubes

1 pint heavy cream

salt & pepper to taste

10-15 spears asparagus, blanched

1/2 c. bacon, crumbled

Parmesan cheese, to taste

Cook bacon till crispy and crumble. Boil bow tie pasta in salted water until al dente. Do NOT over cook.

In wok or heavy skillet melt butter. Add minced garlic and saute a minute or so.

Add Parmesan Cheese and bouillon cube(s). When the bouillon cube is dissolved, slowly stir in heavy cream and salt & pepper. Add cooked pasta to cream sauce and toss until pasta is well covered. Add blanched asparagus. (I wrap the asparagus in a wet paper towel and cook in the  microwave for 2 minutes and then cut up and add to sauce/pasta) Sprinkle with crumbled bacon, and Parmesan cheese and toss together. Serve immediately.

Mongolian Beef:

monolian 2

I LOVEEEE  the Mongolian Beef at PF Changs.  This is second best.  It’s not exactly like PF Changs but it certainly does the trick.  The best part was that my 3 year old ate his bowl and asked for more.  This recipe called for a Wok, I just used a frying pan.

1 lb of flank steak, thinly sliced crosswise (I actually bought shaved beef, it’s easier for a 3 year old to chew)

1/4 cup of cornstarch

3 teaspoons of canola oil

1/2 teaspoon of grated ginger (about 1/2 inch piece)

1 tablespoon of chopped garlic (about 2 -3 large cloves)

1/2 cup of water

1/2 cup of soy sauce (I use low sodium)

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes

3 large green onions, sliced crosswise into thirds (I also used broccoli to get in some veggies and LOVED it).


Prepare the meat:

First, make sure the steak slices are dry (pat them dry) and mix them with the corn starch. Using your hands or a spoon, move them around to make sure all pieces are coated. Place beef slices in a strainer and shake off excess corn starch (see picture bellow).

mongolian prep

Make the sauce:

Heat half of the oil in a large wok at medium-high and add the garlic and ginger. Immediately add the soy sauce, water, brown sugar and pepper flakes. Cook the sauce for about 2 minutes and transfer to a bowl. Don’t worry if the sauce doesn’t look thick enough at this point. The corn starch in the beef will thicken it up later.

Cook the meat and assemble dish:

Turn the heat up and add the remaining oil to the wok. Add the beef and cook, stirring until it is all browned (this is a quick thing). Pour the sauce back into the wok and let it cook along with the meat. Now you can choose to cook it down and reduce the sauce or leave it thinner. Add the green onions on the last minute so the green parts will stay green and the white parts crunchy.

Serve it hot with rice.

Muffin Tin Frittata: Brooke Studdart

My friend made these at a brunch the other day and as an eggy family these are perfect for us.  We tried them and we all LOVED them.  We put mushrooms, spinach, ham and cheese in ours.  The beauty of these is you can make them however you want.

Preheat oven to 350.  Sauté 1 cup each chopped mushrooms and chopped bell pepper.  Coat a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray and divide veggies evenly into each cup, then line the inside with turkey pepperoni slices.  Whisk 10 large eggs and 1 tsp salt.  Pour eggs evenly into muffin cups and sprinkle each with shredded mozzarella cheese.  Bake for 15 minutes, or until egg is set and puffy. Serve with favorite marinara sauce for dipping.

Freezing Tip:  Tightly wrap individual frittatas and freeze.  To reheat:  microwave frozen unwrapped frittata in 15-seccond increments until heated through.

Other frittata combos:

  • cubed ham, green onion and cheddar cheese (this is one I did for brunch this morning)
  •  broccoli and cheddar cheese
  • sautéed zucchini and cooked crumbled sausage
  • spinach, tomato, and feta cheese
  •  sautéed asparagus, tomato and mozzarella cheese

Fruit & Spinach Poppy Seed Salad

It’s not too late to squeeze in a little salad before it gets too cold.  Here’s a yummy salad if you want something new to eat.

1 bunch fresh spinach
1 bunch romaine lettuce

*1/2 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
*1 can mandarin oranges, drained
*1 medium apple, thinly sliced
*1/2 cup crasins

1 cup rice noodles
1/2 cup cashews
1/2 cup caramelized sliced or slivered almonds
3 Tbsp sugar

*All fruit can be added when in season; but salad is delicious with any two ingredients listed above.

Caramelize almonds by toasting sugar and almonds in a large sauce pan, striring constantly on loew heat 15 minuets or until almonds are brown.  Then, gradually increase heat to medium so sugar will melt and glaze almonds.  Immediately pour onto a plate to cool and break apart like peanut brittle.  (this step is optional: add plain sliced almonds if desired.)

You can aloter amounts to your preference on any of these ingredients.  Combine all ingredients making sure to add rice noodles and nuts last so they won’t get soggy.

Poppy Seed Dressing

3/4 cup Vinegar
1 1/2 cup Canola Oil
3/4 cup Sugar
1/2 tsp Dry Mustard
1 Tbsp Poppy Seeds
1/2 tsp Salt

Pour vinegar and oil in blender, add dry ingredients.  Mix until smooth.  Stir in poppy seeds by hand.