Saturday, October 6, 2007

Cooking over the past week...

I have been on vacation from work for a little over a week now, and I should have been cooking much more than I have been. However, I am lazy, especially when I am on vacation, so I have not been. However, I do have some recipes to from dinner the other night and three from a party that we are throwing today to celebrate my husband's and my stepson's birthdays!

From last week, we have roasted vegetables:

I make roasted vegetables often, all winter long. For this incarnation, I used:
  • baby red potatoes
  • yams
  • yellow onion
  • asparagus
  • olive oil
  • Adobo
I cut the vegetables up in chunks and tossed them in olive oil in my 13" X 9" pan. I then sprinkled them with Adobo, stirred them up, sprinkled with Adobo, stirred them up, and sprinkled them with Adobo again. I baked them at 400 degrees for about 45 minutes...until the potatoes and yams were fork-tender.

This is a great recipe for a family because people can always pick out what they don't like. I sometimes us different potatoes, add carrots or turnip, or use spicier seasonings. Yum!

Today, I made some of my favorite soup, Cabbage Patch Soup. I first had a soup like this at the home of an ex-boyfriend's dad and stepmom. I found a close-enough recipe on the Internet and adapted it to make it my own:

For this recipe, you need:
  • 1 - 2 pounds ground meat (I used meatloaf mix, but anything ground will do)
  • 1 head cabbage, chopped coarsely
  • 3 cans diced tomatoes
  • 6 cans broth (I use four can vegetable and two cans beef)
  • 2 to 3 cans beans (whatever kind you like - I used kidney and white beans)
  • carrots
Brown the beef in your stock pot. Once it is brown, add the tomatoes and the broth. Allow to come to a boil. Add beans, carrots, and cabbage. Turn down heat to allow soup to simmer. The cabbage absorbs a lot of liquid, so you might have to add water or broth. Simmer for 45 minutes to an hour, stirring occasionally.

This soup is even better the next day or so!

I also decided to make a homemade-from-scratch cake, my first-ever, for my husband's birthday. I found the recipe for this cake and icing on the Food Network's website:

Chocolate Cake (by Cathy Lowe)
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 t salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 cup boiling water
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare two 9-inch cake pans by rubbing with butter, sprinkling with flour, and tapping our extra. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix together with a wooden spoon and set aside. In a small bowl, combine eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla. Beat well with a hand mixer. Slowly add boiling water and mix. Add wet ingredients to flour mixture and fold and stir until smooth. Pour batter into pans, dividing evenly. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes (note - mine only needed 30 minutes). Remove cake from pans and cool on racks.

Note - My dog ate a hunk off of one of my layers, forcing me to make another layer. The recipe halved well. Also, I tried some of the layer he destroyed, and it was yummy! Also, he got put in time out.

Basic Buttercream Icing (by Colette Peters)
  • 1 cup unsalted butter or margarine, room temperature (I used salted)
  • 1/2 cup milk, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla or other flavoring (I splashed extra vanilla in)
  • 2 pounds confectioner's sugar
Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix at slow speed until smooth. This recipe is enough to cover and fill a 9" X 13" sheet cake or 2 9" cake layer (note - I had a good amount left over).

I have never made cooked icing, and I didn't feel like trying it today. However, this icing was yummy! I have to note that I am really not good at icing cakes, so this one isn't looking so fantastic. I hope everyone forgives me that when they see how good it tastes!

Bon appetit!!!


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Jeena x


I will try some of your recipes. The food looks good.