Sunday, April 29, 2012

Mac N Cheese and the Christening of my Beautiful Vintage Pink Pyrex

    I asked for some suggestions on what recipe I should make to christen my new pink Pyrex. One reader suggested some Mac N Cheese. I thought that was a GREAT idea!! So tonight I whipped up a recipe that was passed from my Dad's Mother down to My Mom and then on to ME. I grew up on this Mac N Cheese. It is pretty amazing and was easily converted to gluten free when I was diagnosed.

Macaroni and Cheese - gluten free

2 C. Gluten Free Pasta
2 C. Milk
2 Eggs
1 1/2 C Velveeta
1/4 C. Margarine
1/2 tsp. Minced Onion
1/8 tsp. Pepper
1/4 tsp. Paprika
1 tsp. Parsley Flakes

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Drain and pour into a baking dish sprayed with cooking spray. In a small sauce pan whisk the eggs into the milk. Add margarine, cheese, pepper and minced onions. Heat over low heat until cheese and butter are melted. Add paprika and parsley to the liquid mixture. Stir and then pour into the baking dish with the pasta. Toss to coat and then bake uncovered for 50 minutes at 350 degrees. Remove from the oven and allow the dish to set for 5-10 min. before serving. Serve hot.

Cook your favorite gf pasta according to the package directions
Place the pasta into your baking dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray.

Whisk the milk and eggs together. Add the cheese, pepper, minced onion and butter. Heat on very low until cheese and butter are melted. Don't cook at too high of a heat or you will cook the eggs.

When the cheese and butter are melted add the parsley and paprika.

Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes

Beautiful pink Pyrex and amazingly yummy Mac N Cheese. Two great things!!

I hope you enjoy my family recipe of Mac N Cheese. I happen to think it's amazing. Enjoy!


Saturday, April 28, 2012

Meet the newest addition to my kitchen......

     I have been drooling over pink Pyrex for some time now. Today I acquired my first piece of beautiful, lovely, amazingly beautiful, vintage, pink Pyrex. She (has to be a she because it's PINK) is a lovely round 2 quart covered casserole baker. Mine actually had the lid which is rare.
     I brought my lovely piece home and decided to do some research on how much it is worth and such. I knew that I got a good deal, but I wasn't sure HOW good of a deal. Did you know that there are entire websites devoted to Pyrex? I didn't know until today.
     According to Correlle Corner my pink beauty was made somewhere between 1952 to 1957. The official color name is "Flamingo". Pretty sassy if you ask me!
     I look forward to picking up more pieces of lovely pink Pyrex in the future. I would REALLY love to have some of the pink daisy bowls.
     Now that I know a little about my beauty I need to decide what to cook in her for the first time. Any suggestions??

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Cheese Enchiladas

     I LOVE recipes that are super easy to make and come out tasting like you spent hours in the kitchen. This is one of those. You can wow your family with minimal effort with these cheese enchiladas. I'm a fan of all things cheese so these are perfect for my tastes and I'm also a fan of Mexican Food. Mmmmm Two of my loves combined! Serve these with some rice and beans for a yummy dinner. If you are feeling extra fancy you can throw in a can of cooked chicken and make them Chicken Enchiladas!!

Cheese Enchiladas
4c Cheese (cheddar, Monterey jack, or a combo of both)
1 c. Sour Cream
1 small onion finely diced
¼ c. Minced Parsley
¼ tsp pepper

1 packet of McCormick enchilada seasoning, prepare as directed on the label OR 1
can Old El Paso Enchilada Sauce (read the labels because as soon as I post this the info. is out of date) OR you can even easily make your own (you will need about 2-3 Cups of sauce)

Big Package of Mission Corn Tortillas (36 at least)

Mix the first 6 ingredients in a small bowl. Warm the corn tortillas under a wet
paper towel in the microwave for about 35 seconds. Only warm 10 at a time. Place
a heaping tablespoon of filling onto the warm tortilla and roll. Put into a
greased 9x 13 pan with the seam side down. Pour enchilada sauce over the tops of
the enchiladas. Bake for about 20-30 min. at 350 deg. If you want, top with more cheese and
bake for another 5-10 min.

Optional Garnish: Lettuce, sour cream, olives

Mix the filling ingredients.
Place some filling on a warmed tortilla.
Roll the tortilla and place seam side down in a 9x13 pan sprayed with cooking spray.

Continue filling and rolling until your pan is full.
Pour the enchilada sauce over the top. Make sure that everything is coated with sauce. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes.  Top with cheese and bake for another 5-10 min. or until cheese is melted.

Enjoy the cheesy yummy goodness!!


Vintage Pop Crate Turned Cute Spice Rack

    I have had this little idea in my head to turn a old wooden pop crate into a spice rack. HOWEVER, all of the pop crates I have found were a little more than I had wanted to spend for my project.....UNTIL Friday!! I was driving down the street and passed a yard sale. Right out front was an adorable Pepsi crate. It was begging me to come and check it out. However I decided it would probably be expensive and I didn't have time. I went on about my errands. I took the same route home and the adorable crate was still sitting out there calling my name. So, I circled the block and stopped at the sale. It was meant to be.....the crate was only marked $3. So I bought it and came home to start my project.
     The crate was a little dusty and had a couple of old mud dauber nests built into the slats. So I took some time to get it all cleaned up. I didn't want a dirty crate to be holding my spices. The rest was easy peasy and I think the end result was pretty great.
I was super lucky and found this crate with the bottle slats still in it for only $3! Just had to clean the dustiness off of it.
Next I just hammered some sawtooth picture hangers onto the back of the crate.

One hanger on each side of the crate. 
And it was ready for hanging and filling with spices. It went great under the Pepsi sign that I got for my birthday last year.

So that was how I made an easy peasy cute spice rack for my kitchen. Once the crate was clean it took about 5 minutes to make! And here is the breakdown of the cost...

Pop Crate: $3
Picture Hangers:$0.38
Total: $3.38     not too shabby :) 

Maybe my idea can inspire you to create something fun for your home. Enjoy!


Friday, April 20, 2012

Mozzarella Cheese Bites-gluten free style

     You all know about my Pinterest obsession. I had run across a picture of cheese balls the other day. However they didn't really have a recipe and I don't believe they were gluten free. However, it inspired me to attempt to create some gluten free cheese bites (I call them bites because they didn't really keep their ball shape).
     I started with some mozzarella string cheese. I cut that into pieces, and then threw them into the freezer until they were solid. Dipped them into some egg, and then into a bread crumb mixture that I created. Into the oven to get melty and then into the tummy!! Mmmmmm They were GOOD! The only problem was...some of them spread out instead of staying rounded. I'm not sure why some did and some didn't. I'm guessing that I wasn't exact in my cutting of the cheese sticks...some pieces bigger and some smaller. Oh well, they all tasted good. Some just weren't as "pretty" as others.

Mozzarella Cheese Bites

4 Sticks of Mozzarella String Cheese, cut into pieces and frozen
1 Slice of Udi's bread
2 T. Parmesan Cheese
1/4 tsp. Garlic Powder
1 tsp. Italian Seasoning Blend
1 egg, beaten

Pre-heat oven to 375 deg. In a small food processor break the piece of bread down into bread crumbs. Add the Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, and Italian Seasoning to the processor. Pulse until combined. Pour into a small bowl.

Remove the Mozzarella cheese pieces from the freezer. Dip them first into the beaten egg and then into the bread crumb mixture. Place them on a baking sheet lined with foil and sprayed with cooking spray. Bake for approximately 10 min. OR until breading is browned and cheese is melty. Watch them very carefully so that they don't get overdone. Serve with pizza sauce for dipping.

Gather your ingredients.
Break the piece of bread into chunks and whirr it around in the food processor.

Add the cheese and spices and pulse until combined.
Have your ingredients ready so that you can easily dip the cheese pieces.
I set up an assembly line so that I could work quickly. You don't want the cheese to unthaw.

Into the egg....

Into the gf bread crumbs and seasoning.....
Place on a foil lined baking sheet that is sprayed with cooking spray. Into the oven they go...
Cook approximately 10 min. or until browned and melty.

These are very yummy!!! You can always double or triple the recipe if you are making them for a crowd. No matter what they come out of the oven looking like....they are still yummy in the tummy!! Enjoy!


Friday, April 13, 2012

Peanut Butter Cup Blondies

    I think that by now you know that I have a love of all things peanut butter and chocolate. That's why when I saw the recipe for these "brownies" as they called them I knew I was going to have to convert them to gluten free. (To me, they are a blondie because they don't have chocolate in the actual batter, so I'm calling mine blondies!) Sooooo I amped up the peanut butter and chocolate levels in these (the original recipe had nowhere near enough) and I happen to think the end result is yummy. I hope you agree!

Peanut Butter Cup Blondies

1 1/3 cups packed brown sugar
6 T butter, melted
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups Gluten Free Flour Mix
1/2 tsp Xanthan Gum
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
36 mini peanut butter cups (Reese’s are the best!) or 35 if you eat one, not that I did that
1 cup milk chocolate chips

Pre-heat the oven to 350 deg. Spray a 9x13 in. pan with cooking spray.

In a bowl, beat together sugar, peanut butter, butter, vanilla, and eggs until well blended. Mix in flour, baking powder, baking soda, and xanthan gum.

Cut 12 peanut butter cups into quarters and gently stir into blondie batter along with the chocolate chips. Spread into baking dish and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out fairly clean

Remove from oven and immediately press remaining peanut butter cups into the top of the blondies in even rows. Allow to cool before cutting and serving.

Yummy chunks of pb cup

Look at those chunks of pb cup going into the batter...mmmmm

Sorry bad picture, I forgot to snap a pic of them BEFORE they went into the oven! oopsie!

Smoosh the whole PB cups into the warm blondies and let them cool (if you can)

These are so good. They need a tall glass of cold cold milk to go with them. Mmmmm