Sunday, March 30, 2014

Super Moist Almond Poppy Seed Bundt Cake (Which Can Be Done Gluten Free!)

My mother-in-law is gluten intolerant.  She is in town this week and so we tried out a new cake one night.  This is a semi-homemade cake, and it is really only gluten free because of the gluten free cake mix that she bought.  You could make the cake non-gluten free by using a regular old cake mix.  And it would probably still be delicious.  But, if you can't do gluten, this ended up being easy, moist and delicious.  My mother-in-law says she will never make gluten-free cake any other way now!

Almond Poppy Seed Bundt Cake
adapted from:

1 yellow cake mix (we used a gluten free cake mix)
1 package instant vanilla pudding (the small box)
2 Tbsp. poppy seeds
1 c. water
1/2 c. oil
4 eggs
2 tsp. almond extract

Almond Glaze
I didn't really measure my ingredients for this glaze, but I used appoximately:
2 c. powdered sugar
2 Tbsp. milk
1 tsp. butter
1/4 tsp. almond extract
1/2 c. sliced almonds

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour a bundt cake pan.  In a large mixing bowl, stir together the cake mix, pudding mix and poppy seeds.  Make a well in the center and add in the water, oil, eggs and almond extract.  Mix it for 30 seconds on low speed and then 4 minutes on medium speed.  Pour it into the cake pan.  Bake it for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Let it cool completely before removing it from the pan.
In a small bowl, mix together the powdered sugar, milk, butter, almond extract and stir it until it is smooth. Drizzle it over your cooled cake.  In a small frying pan, toast the almonds over medium heat until light brown.  Then sprinkle them on your cake.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Smothered Pork Chops

This was a great recipe for smothered pork chops.  The pork chops had a great flavor, and the sauteed mushrooms and onions in the gravy added a delicious tangy-ness.  I served it with garlic mashed potatoes, which was a great fit.  The night I made it I had to run to my bookclub before I could eat.  When I got home, I heard words that I always want to hear, but usually don't: "Mom, dinner was SO good tonight!"  What?!  Could you please repeat that, just because it is so soothing to my ears?  I will definitely be making this again.

Smothered Pork Chops
adapted from:

1 packet brown gravy mix
6 boneless pork chops
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 large onion, sliced
1 1/2 c. mushrooms, sliced (I used a can of mushrooms, water drained)
1 Tbsp. butter
1 tsp. minced garlic
salt and pepper
garlic powder
onion powder
2 Tbsp. steak sauce

Lay your pork chops out on a baking sheet and generously season both sides with the salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder.  In a heavy frying pan, heat your olive oil over medium-high heat.  Add the pork, turn it down to medium and cook until it is cooked through.  Remove it from the heat.  In another pan, heat the butter over medium-high heat.  Saute' your onions and mushrooms until they are tender.  In a small sauce pan, cook the brown gravy according to the package directions.  Add the minced garlic and steak sauce and stir it well.  Stir the mushrooms and onions into the gravy.  Serve the pork chops with the gravy mixture over the top.  

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Easy Cream Cheese Alfredo Sauce

So, I totally took this picture from another alfredo recipe that we have on this blog.  The problem is that this is a really easy alfredo recipe, that I wanted to share, but the only picture I have taken is one with really bad quality.  I was afraid no one would want to make this recipe if the picture looked really ugly.  And it is a really easy, yummy recipe.  So please forgive the stolen picture (Monica, I'm pretty sure this is your alfredo picture), and just know that your alfredo will turn out just as pretty as this one!

Easy Cream Cheese Alfredo Sauce
adapted from:

1 (8 oz.) package of cream cheese
2 Tbsp. butter
1 1/2 c. milk
6 oz. Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. dried basil
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

In a sauce pan, over medium heat, melt the cream cheese and butter, stirring occasionally.  Add the milk and Parmesan cheese and continue stirring until it is smooth.  Add the garlic, basil and pepper.  Simmer for 5 minutes and then serve it over your favorite pasta.