Sunday, November 20, 2011

Cinnamon Roasted Almonds

Last week I helped make dinner for our Ward Relief Society Christmas dinner (yes, we are a little early, and yes, I did encourage that).  I made a salad that I found on The Sisters Cafe.  These cinnamon almonds went on top and they were so delicious!  I will post the rest of the salad soon because it got rave reviews. You know those shops in malls, where when you walk past them, your nostrils force you to stop and taste and possibly even pay exuberant amounts of money for that delicious smelling cinnamon-y, sugary, crunchy, almond goodness?  Well, these are just like those!  Only, it's your house that smells like that!  And you aren't paying ridiculous amounts of money to eat that sugary goodness!  Aren't you happy? 

Cinnamon Roasted Almonds
1 c. white sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 egg white
1 tsp. vanilla
4 c. almonds

Preheat your oven to 250 degrees.  Grease well a 13X17 inch baking sheet.  I used actual shortening to grease mine.  In a small bowl, combine the sugar, salt and cinnamon and set it aside.  In a large bowl, slightly beat the egg white.  Add the vanilla and beat it until it is very frothy, but not quite to the stiff peak stage.  

Add the almonds to the egg white mixture and stir them well, until they are all coated.  Here is a little tip:  Don't add more almonds past this point.  The almonds have to be coated in the egg whites or the upcoming sugar won't stick to them.  I learned this the hard way.  
When you have your almonds nice and egg white-y, add the sugar mixture and stir it all together until they are evenly coated.  Pour them onto your greased pan and spread them evenly.  Bake for one hour, stirring them when they are halfway through.  

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Pumpkin Pecan Cake

I got this recipe a few years ago from Dustin's Aunt Julia, who is an amazing cook.  This has become one of my favorite pumpkin recipes.  It is a great alternative to pumpkin pie.  The cake-mix and pecans on top add a sweet crunchiness that is delicious.  I serve it with a little whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Pumpkin Pecan Cake
by: Aunt Julia

2 1/2 c. pumpkin
12 oz. can evaporated milk
1 c. sugar
3 eggs
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
1 pinch nutmeg
1 yellow cake mix
1 1/2 c. pecans
1 c. butter, melted (Just do it!  Don't think about it!)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl combine the pumpkin, evaporated milk, sugar, eggs, cinnamon and nutmeg and mix it well.  Pour the mixture into a greased 9X13 pan.  Sprinkle the yellow cake mix over the top.  Then sprinkle the pecans over the top of that.  Then drizzle your 1/2 POUND (!!) of melted butter over the top of that.  Please do this.  You will not regret it when you taste the first bite of sweet, slightly crispy, amazingly yummy, buttery cake.  Bake it for 60 minutes, or until a fork inserted in the center comes out clean.  Serve it with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.  It is best eaten a little warm.  

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Mom's Pork Chop Supper

In honor of my sweet mother who got in a car accident last week and broke a vertebrae in her back (We love you, Mom!), I decided to post one of her most famous meals-at least among her children: Pork Chop Supper.  It is super easy and will forever remind me of eating dinner with my family when I was young.  This can be cooked in a slow cooker or on the stove top.  As with most things, I prefer the slow cooker.  There is something so gratifying about eating dinner and not having done anything for it, at least in the last 6-8 hours (or 4-6 if it is on high!).  It makes me feel like someone else made it for me.  And most meals taste better when someone else has cooked it for you.  The other great thing about this meal is that most components of the meal are cooked together.  No need to steam veggies for the side, it is all there together!

Mom's Pork Chop Supper
by: Lynne'

4 pork chops
2 cans tomato soup
1 can water
salt and pepper to taste
4-5 potatoes
4-5 carrots
1 onion
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

In your crock pot, mix together the tomato soup, water, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper.  Cut the potatoes, onions and carrots into 1-2 inch chunks.  Add the pork chops and vegetables to the pot and cook for 6-8 hours on low or 4-6 hours on high.  If you cook this on the stove-top, bring it all to a boil and then turn it down to medium low heat and simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.  
As a side note: the other day I made this and only had 1 can of tomato soup that wasn't extremely expired.  So I made it using 1 can tomato soup, 1 can coconut milk, 1 can tomato sauce and 2 tsp. sugar, plus the other ingredients.  It tasted wonderful!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Sweet and Easy Squash

This is the way that Dustin taught me to cook squash.  I usually do Acorn squash, but I have done many other kinds this way and they all taste delicious.  Although, how could anything drenched in butter and brown sugar taste anything other than delicious?!  This is similar to Nicole's awesome recipe for squash, but one big difference is that this one is done in the microwave in about 5 minutes.  So if you don't remember to get it in the slow cooker earlier, this is an easy way to cook it and make it yummy!

Sweet and Easy Squash 
by: Carolyn 

1 Acorn Squash (or any other variety with a hard outside)
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp brown sugar
dash cinnamon
dash nutmeg
salt to taste

Cut the squash in half, lengthwise.  Scoop out the seeds.  Put both halves of the squash face up on a microwave safe plate.  Plop half of the butter and half of the brown sugar on both sides of the squash, in the little hole where the seeds were.  Sprinkle a little cinnamon and a little nutmeg on top of the brown sugar.  Do the brown sugar amounts to your taste.  If you want it a little sweeter, add a little more.  If not, add a little less.  Gently place a sheet of plastic wrap over the top of both sides of your squash and cook it in the microwave for 5-6 minutes, or until the squash is tender when poked with a fork.  
When the squash is cooked, let it sit for a couple of minutes until you are able to handle it a little.  Take your fork and scrape the fleshy part of the squash away from the shell part.  You can either scoop it out and serve it in another dish, or do like we often do and just leave it in the shell and eat it right out of it.  Sprinkle a little salt over the top to add a little salty to your sweet and it is delicious!