There has been a lot of Pinteresting cooking going on around here. And now that Himself is home, I’ll be trying even more. The last two recipes were prepared by my Mom for Little Bird’s birthday party. The recipes are as written on their web sites.
Melt in Your Mouth Chicken Breast from:
4 boneless chicken breast halves
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 1/2 teaspoons seasoning salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Mix mayonnaise, cheese and seasonings.
Spread mixture over chicken breast and place in baking dish.
Bake at 375°F for 45 minutes.
[Notes: The pinner swapped out Greek yogurt for the mayo, which I did also. The yogurt made for a very tangy sauce. I’m not sure how much I really liked it. It was good but I don’t know if I will fix it again.]
Baked Parmesan Tomatoes from:
4 tomatoes, halved horizontally
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
Preheat oven to 450° F.
Place tomatoes cut-side up on a baking sheet. Top with Parmesan, oregano, salt and pepper. Drizzle with oil. Bake until the tomatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.
[Note: To sample the recipe I used 1 tomato that was already sliced. So that cut the cooking time almost in half. I also used a basil-oregano-sun dried tomato mix instead of plain oregano. Finally, I hit them with the broiler for a minute before serving to brown the melted cheese.]
Baked Butternut Squash Fries from:
One 2lb butternut squash
2 tablespoons canola oil
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Peel a large butternut squash, slice it width-wise down the center and then length-wise so that you have 4 equal quarters. Scoop out the fleshy, seedy centers of the two bulbous ends. Cut the squash into even, thin sticks, about 1/3″ thick.
Place the cut squash in a large bowl, add 2 tablespoons canola oil, and use your hands to rub the oil on each fry shape. Then, salt them to high heaven.
Here’s the key: Bake them on a wire cooling rack set on top of a baking sheet. The air will be able to circulate around all sides of the fries and they’ll develop a much more even crisp. I’ve experimented with both methods of baking the fries: one where the fries laid on the cooling rack (as pictured and directed), and one where the squash laid directly on a cookie sheet. The cooling rack is far superior.
They’ll take about 40 minutes in the oven. Flip them halfway.
[Note: I added some Cajun seasoning to a row of fries before baking and they were waaaay better.]
Wild Rice Salad from:
1 cup long-grain wild rice (6 ounces)
2 navel oranges
2 tablespoons good olive oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons raspberry vinegar
½ cup seedless green grapes, cut in half
½ cup pecans, toasted
¼ cup dried cranberries
2 tablespoons scallions, white and green parts, chopped
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Place the wild rice in a medium pot with 4 cups of water and 2 teaspoons of salt and bring to a boil. Simmer uncovered for 50 to 60 minutes, until the rice is very tender. Drain well and place the rice back in the pot. Cover and allow to steam for 10 minutes.
While the rice is still warm, place it in a mixing bowl. Peel the oranges with a sharp knife, removing all the white pith. Cut between the membranes and add the orange sections to the bowl with the rice. Add the olive oil, orange juice, raspberry vinegar, grapes, pecans, cranberries, scallions, ½ teaspoon of salt, and the pepper. Allow to sit for 30 minutes for the flavors to blend. Taste for seasonings and serve at room temperature.
Oreo Cheesecake Cookies from:
Collecting The Moments at http://thisistolove.blogspot.com/2011/08/oreo-cheesecake-cookies.html
Recipe from Brown Eyed Baker, adapted from Tasty Kitchen, originally from Multiply Delicious
Yield: About 1 dozen cookies (mine made about 1 1/2 dozen, as I used around 1 inch balls of dough)
½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup mini chocolate chips (I didn't have minis so I left these out)
1 cup Oreo cookie crumbs
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (this is important! I was out of parchment and my cookies got a little overcooked on the bottom, I think the Oreo crumbs cooked quickly on the hot baking sheet and caused this) and set aside.
2. In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and cream cheese on medium speed until smooth and well-combined.
3. Add the sugar and vanilla extract and mix until the ingredients are well-combined. Add the flour and mix on low until the flour is incorporated. Stir in the mini chocolate chips with a rubber spatula.
4. Place the Oreo cookie crumbs in a small bowl. Scoop the cookies into about 1½ to 2″ balls (the dough will be soft, don’t worry if it doesn't scoop into a well-formed ball, the crumbs will help hold it together) and then roll in the cookie crumbs. Place the cookie balls on the baking sheet. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the edges are golden and the tops are slightly puffed.
5. Cool on the pan for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.