Thursday, November 15, 2012

Jeans Bars (guaranteed to make your jeans tight)

My mom made these as a kid.  I loved them.  I'd forgotten all about them.  Probably haven't had one in 10 years or more.  The other night, I had a dream about these and woke up craving them.  I called my mom, but my mom has hundreds of cookbooks and wasn't sure which one they were in since she probably hasn't made them in 10 years or more.  Isn't the internet a wonderful thing?  I googled them and BAM, they were all over!  It came from the 1983 Pillsbury Classic, No. 30, "Best Recipes."

1 cup flour
1/2 cup butter 
1/4 cup sugar

1 cup graham-cracker crumbs
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped nuts (I omitted)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk 

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In small bowl, cut butter into flour and sugar until crumbly. Press in bottom of ungreased 13-inch-by-9-inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine all filling ingredients; mix well. Spread over partially baked crust. Return to oven and bake 15 to 20 minutes more until golden brown. Cool completely.

In a small bowl, blend frosting ingredients until creamy; spread over bars. Cut into bars.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

PF Chang's Lettuce Wraps

I stumbled upon Iowa Girl Eats while specifically searching for a PF Chang's lettuce wrap copycat recipe.  She just might be my new BFF (blogger friend forever).  Her recipes look INCREDIBLE.  She gave me permission to share her awesome take on PF Chang's lettuce wraps (only less greasy and healthier!)  They were a hit at my house.  Derek had like 5 and said it was a keeper.  He rarely gives his input on recipes, so you know this is a winner.  Even my picky children ate it without complaints.  I will share her recipe, but comment on what I did differently.  I know I typically avoid long ingredient list recipes, but this one is well worth it.  And it is still quick and easy to throw together.

1lb ground chicken breast
1/2 medium onion, minced
salt & pepper, a dash of each
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1 inch nob fresh ginger, peeled & minced (I grated it and probably used a lot less than an inch)
1 Tablespoon sesame oil (I didn't have this, so I used Canola Oil)
2 1/2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 Tablespoon water
1 Tablespoon natural peanut butter
1/2 Tablespoon honey
1 Tablespoons + 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce (I used 1 tsp chili powder)
dash of fresh pepper
3 green onions, chopped
1/2-8oz can sliced water chestnuts, drained & chopped
1/4 cup peanuts, chopped (I threw them in my food processor on "chop")
10-12 large outer lettuce leaves, rinsed and patted dry (I used Boston Leaf)
*I will add match stick carrots next time to up the veggie content and add some color*

In skillet, add chicken, onion, salt & pepper, and cook until chicken is nearly done, stirring often to break up the meat. Add in minced garlic and ginger, and continue cooking until chicken is no longer pink.

In a microwave safe bowl, combine sesame (canola) oil, soy sauce, water, peanut butter, honey, rice vinegar, chili garlic sauce (chili powder) and pepper. Microwave for 20 seconds, then stir until smooth. Add into the skillet and stir to combine.

Add green onion and water chestnuts into the skillet then cook for 1-2 minutes until the onions are soft and the water chestnuts are heated through.  (Here is where I would add the carrots next time).

Stir in chopped peanuts.  Serve wrapped in lettuce leaves

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Chicken Tortilla Soup

My sister passed this recipe along years ago. Not sure of where it came from, but it is delicious!

2 tbl oil
1 medium onion
2 cups cooked chicken (shredded or diced)
1 (15.25 oz) can corn (drained)
1 (15 oz) black beans (rinsed and drained)
1 (15 oz) diced tomatoes (NOT drained)
1 (4 oz) green chilies (drained)
1 (1.25 oz) taco seasoning packet
2 (14.5 oz) chicken broth
1 tbl lime juice

Saute onion in oil until onion is clear/tender

add all except broth and lime juice, mixing to blend seasoning & heating through

add broth and bring to a boil

simmer for 10 to 15 minutes

add lime juice

top with tortilla strips or crushed tortilla chips (we did those with "a hint of lime"), shredded cheddar cheese, cilantro & sour cream

Lemonade Punch

I LOVE making punch for special occasions.  I came across this on that evil, evil, time sucking, but oh-so wonderful pinterest...

1 cup Countrytime Lemonade mix
2 cups cold water
1 can of chilled pineapple juice {46 oz}
2 cans chilled Lemon Lime soda

Garnish with ice and sliced lemons