Thursday, April 28, 2011

Cajun Tilapia with dill sauce

I tried this recipe last night and wow it was good. Definitely a great change to our usual fish dish.

Cajun Tilapia

4 fillets tilapia
salt and pepper to taste
Cajun seasoning, cover both sides of fish with med coat
2 lemons, sliced (reserve portion for sauce)

Dill Sauce

1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease a 9x13 inch baking dish. Season the tilapia fillets with salt, pepper and Cajun seasoning on both sides. Arrange the seasoned fillets in a single layer in the baking dish. Place a layer of lemon slices over the fish fillets. I usually use about 2-3 slices on each piece so that it covers most of the surface of the fish. Bake uncovered for 18 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until fish flakes easily with a fork.While the fish is baking, mix together the mayonnaise, sour cream, garlic powder, lemon juice and dill in a small bowl chill until ready to serve. Serve with tilapia. 

(recipe adapted from

Monday, April 25, 2011

Strawberry Delight

This recipe is from my childhood. My mom used to make this for my sisters and me. No special reason. Maybe because it's such a good treat. All ages will love this cool dish. Fresh strawberries are in season so take advantage! This can be served as a dessert or a side dish.

Strawberry Delight

16 oz fresh strawberries
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon Juice
3 Tablespoons sugar
32 oz. strawberry yogurt
8 oz. whipped cream
1 package miniature marshmallows

Wash and slice strawberries. Put in large bowl. Squeeze lemon juice over strawberries. Sprinkle with sugar and stir. Let sit 10 minutes. Add yogurt and refrigerate until ready to serve. Once ready to serve, whip your cream and fold in. Then add marshmallows and mix thoroughly. Serve immediately. This recipe won't last too long in the fridge because the marshmallows get soggy.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Diet Strawberry Smoothie

This shake tastes great and is packed with protein. My husband was impressed that it tasted so good and he could actually have it on his diet.

Strawberry Smoothie

16 oz fresh strawberries
6 oz. Greek plain yogurt
1 cup skim milk
1/3 cup sweetener (use sugar if you are not worried about calories maybe 1/4 cup at first and add more if needed)
1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
6 large ice cubes

Blend in blender until smooth consistency. Serve immediately. Makes about 5 1/2 cups

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Apple Crisp

For some reason blogger is not letting me upload the other pictures I have of this apple crisp. Annoying. Anyway this is a yummy dessert for those like me that don't care too much for a chocolaty dessert. Served warm with vanilla ice cream it's delicious.I like to use granny smith apples because of their tartness. You can use any kind of baking apples you like.

Apple Crisp

8 medium sized baking apples, peeled cored and sliced
juice from 1/2 lemon
1/4 cup sugar (you may need a little more. I like to get the apples coated with sugar)
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Crumb Topping:
3/4 cup flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
8 Tablespoons butter (one stick), softened

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Peel, core and slice your apples. Make sure they are all uniform in size so they cook evenly. Place your cut apples in an 8X10 baking dish. Squeeze your fresh lemon juice on the apples and mix. Pour sugar and cinnamon on the apples and mix again lightly coating each apple with sugar. In a separate bowl mix flour, oats, brown sugar and cinnamon together. Add softened butter and mix thoroughly. Sprinkle the crumb topping over your apple filling. Bake for 35-40 min or until apples are tender. Serve with ice cream.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Roasted Tomato and Basil Soup

I have really been craving tomato soup lately. The canned stuff just really doesn't do it for me. My sister introduced this recipe to me. YUM!

Roasted Tomato and Basil Soup

3 pounds ripe plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons good olive oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
2 cups chopped yellow onions (2 onions)
6 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 (28-ounce) canned plum tomatoes, with their juice
4 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 quart chicken stock or water

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Toss together the tomatoes, 1/4 cup olive oil, salt, and pepper. Spread the tomatoes in 1 layer on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes.
In an 8-quart stockpot over medium heat, saute the onions and garlic with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, the butter, and red pepper flakes for 10 minutes, until the onions start to brown. Add the canned tomatoes, basil, thyme, and chicken stock. Add the oven-roasted tomatoes, including the liquid on the baking sheet. Bring to a boil and simmer uncovered for 40 minutes. Pass through a food mill fitted with the coarsest blade. Taste for seasonings. Serve hot or cold.

I used a blender instead of a food mill and it worked fine.

Recipe from: Barefoot Contessa

Monday, April 11, 2011

Twice Baked Potatoes

I love this recipe because I can make a ton and then freeze most of them for quick meals later. It doesn't take much longer to make more so it's so worth it to have yummy baked potatoes ready to reheat anytime.

Twice Baked Potatoes
 (this recipe makes 10 servings)

10 med to large russet potatoes, baked
3 to 4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sour cream 
2 tablespoons green onion, chopped 
1 tsp salt 
1 tablespoon horseradish 
3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese 
6 strips cooked bacon, crumbled 
pinch of Paprika 
Milk, if mixture needs more moisture 

Bake your potatoes in the oven as usual. I do it by washing the potatoes and pierce them with a fork. Place potatoes in the oven (right on the rack) set at 400 degrees. It takes about an hour to bake them so plan ahead:) Once they are soft cut a lengthwise slit in the top big enough for you to scoop out the potato pulp. Leave some in the shell for stability. Once you have all the pulp in a bowl add butter, sour cream, green onion salt and horseradish. Mash together. If you need a little more liquid to soften the pulp use milk. Using the mashed potato mixture fill the potato skins back up with the mixture. Top each potato with cheese, bacon and a pinch of Paprika. Broil in oven until cheese is browned. If you are going to freeze some of the potatoes I would suggest wrapping them in foil and then placing in a freezer bag. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Bridesmaid cards

My sister asked me to make cards so she can ask her friends in a cute way to be her bridesmaids. This is the card I came up with. Her colors are green, orange and yellow. She also is going to get her bridesmaids parasols for the wedding. Hope she likes them!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Basic Pie Crust

I started making pies when I was pretty young. My grandma gave me a rolling pin and a recipe book and I have loved it ever since. Handling your dough is the most important part of getting a great pie crust. If you like flaky then try this.

Using a pastry blender cut the shortening it's in small pieces. You can see a close up below. I just recently got this pasty blender. You don't need one. Just use a fork to cut the shortening with the prongs. You can see above I have a cup full of water and ice. This will give you plenty of water to work with and it will be super cold from the ice.

Pour your ice water in a little at a time and using your hands lightly mix the dough with your fingers. Try not to press it or knead it too much.
Add water until all the dough stays together. If you add too much and it's sticky add a little more flour.
This recipe makes enough dough for a bottom and top crust. You will want to separate your dough into two equal pieces. Place each piece on a sheet of plastic wrap.
I am not sure if you can see in this picture but you should see ribbons of shortening throughout your dough. Flaky crust comes from that fat not totally mixed into the dough. Refrigerate about 1/2 hour before rolling out and baking.

Basic Pie Crust

2 cups flour, sifted
1 tsp salt
1 cup shortening
1/4 cup ice water (you will probably need a little more than that)

Sift flour, then measure. Mix flour and salt together. Cut in shortening until crumbly. Stir in ice water with hands until dough holds together. Form two balls. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1/2 hour before rolling out.