Tag Archives: mashed potatoes

Week Eight: Chicken Alfredo, Chocolate Chip Cookie Skillet, and Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Standard

Now, my boyfriend came over this weekend, and wanted me to make mashed potatoes, but also jumped at the chance to have chicken alfredo when I listed various chicken dishes that could be made. So, naturally I made both for him. I chose a different recipe than last time for the potatoes, because I wasn’t super pleased with how it came out, although others seemed to be.

I also made a Caesar salad to go along with the meal, which clearly got very little photographic attention.

I also made a Caesar salad to go along with the meal, which clearly got very little photographic attention.

FLORENTINE CHICKEN ALFREDO 
4 boneless chicken breasts 
Salt and pepper 
2 tablespoons butter 
8 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced 
1 ounce fresh spinach, cut into thin strips * 
Alfredo Sauce, see recipe below

Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Grill on an outdoor or indoor grill; keep warm while making the rest of the recipe.

Meanwhile, sauté the mushrooms in the 2 tablespoons of butter until tender and set aside. Make the Alfredo sauce. Add the cooked mushrooms and spinach to the sauce and heat through over very low heat just until the spinach has wilted. Gradually whisk in a little water if the sauce is too thick. Serve the sauce over the chicken.

Makes 4 servings 
Do not freeze/Does not reheat well 

* You’ll need about 1 2/3 cups “confetti” sized strips (chiffonade).

Chicken before being marinaded

Chicken before being marinaded

AMAZING ALFREDO SAUCE 
4 tablespoons butter 
2 cloves garlic, minced 
1/4 teaspoon pepper 
1 cup heavy cream 
3 ounces parmesan cheese, grated or shredded 
2 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded 
Water, if needed (see my comments below)

Blurry but delicious

Blurry but delicious

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Add the garlic, pepper and cream and simmer about 2 minutes minutes. Gradually whisk in the parmesan cheese. Simmer another 10 minutes until the sauce has thickened and the cheese has completely melted. Very gradually whisk in the mozzarella cheese, whisking constantly.

Per Serving: 646 Calories; 51g Fat; 43g Protein; 5g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 4g Net Carbs

photo 2-30 photo 5-24
It’s very satisfying making sauce, as you get to enjoy the smell and process of it thickening.  I doubled the sauce because I doubled the chicken, but I would advise making more sauce with this meal to cover the pasta as well. A sauce this good should last a few more meals!
 

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield 2 servings

So hilariously enough, in knowing nothing about cooking and generally having bad luck, I messed up this recipe the first time. In reflection, I think I may have put tablespoons instead of teaspoons of vanilla extract in, which would explain why the recipe wouldn’t become solid. I also added everything on heat. So naturally, when I folded the chocolate chips in, they melted straight off and I ended up with this mess.

While this looking very moist here, it ended up being a crumbly substance which was good on top of ice cream, but didn't serve many other functions.

While this looks very moist here, it ended up being a crumbly substance which was good on top of ice cream, but didn’t serve many other functions.

Now I check twice before putting ingredients in. This sent me into quite a panic, as I wanted to give my boyfriend the most delicious meal possible. So I ended up taking an extra day than I had planned in order to try again. Thankfully I had enough materials.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 14 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • Ice cream, for serving

photo 5-23

Much different in appearance!

These are the results of the second attempt, much more delicious in appearance!

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly coat 2 5-inch cast iron skillets with nonstick spray.
  • In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
  • Melt 10 tablespoons butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, whisking constantly, until the foam subsides and the butter begins to turn a golden brown, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat; strain through cheesecloth or fine sieve. I don’t have one of these, but would consider using one for future cooking endeavors.  I believe it might serve to rid extra fat from meats, but not 100% sure.
  • Stir in remaining 4 tablespoons butter until completely melted. Whisk in sugars and vanilla until well combined. Whisk in egg and egg yolk until well combined. Add flour mixture, beating just until incorporated. Gently fold in chocolate chips.
  • Divide mixture into the prepared skillets. Place into oven and bake until edges are golden brown but center is still moist, about 12-15 minutes.
  • Serve immediately, topped with ice cream, if desired.

photo 5-25 photo 3-33

Kyle enjoying the meal, but more probably some joke I made in the instant.

Kyle enjoying the meal, but more probably some joke I made in the instant.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 10-12 servings

Apparently I have no pictures on my phone of these potatoes however. 

 

Ingredients

  • 5 pounds potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 3 heads garlic
  • olive oil
  • salt/pepper
  • 8 tablespoons butter, softened & divided
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3/4 – 1 cup milk, room temp
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • fresh chives

Instructions

  1. To begin you’ll need to roast your garlic. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and take a slice off the top of the garlic heads, not the end with the stem. (enough to expose the cloves) THIS SMELLED AMAZING!
  2. Place the garlic heads in a small oven safe pan with the cut side up. Drizzle the garlic with a little olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover the pan with foil and roast for 4-50 minutes or until they are golden brown and softened.
  3. Allow the garlic to set until cool enough to handle, then squeeze from the bottom of each head of garlic to push the roasted cloves out. Set aside.
  4. Place the cubed potatoes in a large pot of salted water and bring to a boil on the stove. The water should be salty almost like the ocean. Boil until fork tender.
  5. Drain the potatoes and place them in a large mixing bowl. Add 4 tablespoons of the butter, the roasted garlic, and sour cream to the bowl. Blend on medium speed until combined.
  6. With the mixer on, add a large pinch of salt and begin drizzling in the room temperature milk. As the potatoes get light and fluffy, increase the speed on the mixer. When all the milk is added in, drizzle in the vinegar and whip for a minute or two until light and fluffy.
  7. Check for seasoning and add salt if needed.
  8. Scoop the potatoes into a large serving bowl and create a shallow well in the center.
  9. Melt the remaining butter and pour into the well of the potatoes. Garnish with fresh snipped chives and a little cracked black pepper.

Week Seven: Meat Loaf, Mashed Potatoes, Bacon Pea Salad, and Brown Sugar Coconut Oil Cookies

Standard
Continuing the theme of making meats I enjoy, I decided to have a go at meatloaf.  I also thought it was time to make actual mashed potatoes and a salad including my favorite vegetable, peas.  It seems like this is when I started getting really into photographing the whole process.
 
 
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Bake: 1 hour + standing
MAKES: 6-8 servings
 
meatloaf mixture

meatloaf mixture

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2/3 cup finely crushed saltines
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • Dash pepper
  • 1-1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
 photo 4-22

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, combine the first seven ingredients. Add beef; mix lightly but thoroughly. Shape into an 8×4-in. loaf in an ungreased 15x10x1-in. baking pan.
  2. In a small bowl, combine remaining ingredients, stirring to dissolve sugar; remove 1/2 cup for sauce. Spread remaining mixture over meat loaf.
  3. Bake 60-65 minutes or until a thermometer reads 160°. Let stand 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with reserved sauce. Yield: 6 servings.

Nutritional Facts

1 serving (1 piece) equals 268 calories, 9 g fat (4 g saturated fat), 98 mg cholesterol, 810 mg sodium, 27 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 20 g protein.

photo 4-23

before

after

after

Ultimate Mashed Potatoes

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, beat eggs. Add milk, saltines, onion, salt, sage and pepper. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Shape into an 8-in. x 4-in. oval in an ungreased shallow baking pan.
  2. Combine the remaining ingredients; spread 3/4 cup over meat loaf. Bake at 350° for 60-65 minutes or until no longer pink and a meat thermometer reads 160°; drain. Let stand 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with remaining sauce. Yield: 6-8 servings.

photo 5-20

Ingredients
  • 5 Yukon Potatoes – They are gold in color
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • ¼ cup of onion – finely diced
  • 4 ounces of sour cream
  • 2 ounces of light cream cheese
  • ¼ cup of parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup of butter
  • Chives – Garnish
 photo 1-28
Instructions
  1. Cut each potato into 4 pieces – I leave the skin on
  2. Place the potatoes, garlic ,and onions into boiling water – I use a large stock pot
  3. Boil till potatoes are tender
  4. Drain (none of the potatoes, garlic, or onions should come out)
  5. Place the potato mix back into the pot – over low heat add cream cheese, parmesan cheese, sour cream , and butter
  6. Mash like it is going out of style
  7. Place in serving dish and garnish with chives
  8. Enjoy!
This cook claimed that they really knew their potatoes, as they were Irish.  But I think these potatoes seemed to taste a little too much of sour cream for my taste.
 

cook’s notes:

  • I prefer to use frozen peas that have thawed overnight in the refrigerator. I prefer the texture and flavour of them over canned peas. If you have fresh peas, blanch them as you would to freeze them and use them after they’ve chilled.
  • We served scoops of this on top of salad the other day and loved it. Bonus: No dressing necessary.
  • This can be served immediately after stirring it together, but tastes even better if allowed to sit, tightly covered, in the refrigerator for an hour or up to three days. It should be eaten within 3 days of being made, which is NOT a problem. Trust me.

photo 1-24photo 5-18

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of bacon, cooked according to package instructions, drained and crumbled or finely chopped
  • 2 pounds frozen peas, thawed in the refrigerator overnight
  • 3/4 cup coarsely grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 small red onion, peeled, and finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup of mayonnaise
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika

photo 4-25

Instructions

Stir together all of the ingredients and serve immediately, or (preferably) put in a tupperware, Gladware, or other tightly covered container in the refrigerator to give the flavours a chance to meld for an hour but up to three days prior to serving. Give it a gentle stir from top to bottom before serving.

photo 3-27 photo 5-21 photo 4-24

I let my brother pick the dessert!

Soft Batch Dark Brown Sugar Coconut Oil Cookies

YIELD: about 15 medium-sized cookies

PREP TIME: 10 minutes

COOK TIME: 8 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 18 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup coconut oil, softened (softened to the consistency of soft butter; not rock hard and not runny or melted, see below)
1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1 large egg
2 tablespoons vanilla extract (yes tablespoons, not teaspoons), or to taste

-I surprisingly ran out of vanilla extract and had to put in a little almond extract, but they ended up tasting fine.
1 tablespoon unsulphered mild to medium molasses (use very dark or Blackstrap at your own risk because its very pungent and bitter for baking)
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons corn starch
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt, optional and to taste

DIRECTIONS:

  1. To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine coconut oil, egg, sugar and beat on medium-high speed to cream until light and fluffy, 4 to 5 minutes. Note – Coconut oil should be the consistency of soft butter like you’d use to cream with sugar and eggs in traditional cookies. If coconut oil is rock hard, microwave it in a small bowl for 5 to 10 seconds or just until it begins to soften. If coconut oil is runny or melted, place it in the freezer momentarily until it firms up. A tiny amount of runniness is fine; it’s an oil and that happens. But do not use melted or purely liquid coconut oil because you can’t effectively cream a liquid; it would be like trying to cream liquid butter.
  2. Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the vanilla, molasses, and beat to incorporate, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the flour, corn starch, baking soda, optional salt, and mix until just combined, about 1 minute.
  3. Using a medium cookie scoop, form mounds that are 2 heaping tablespoons in size; or divide dough into approximately 15 to 16 equal-sized pieces. Place dough mounds on a large plate, and slightly flatten each mound. Very important to get the dough mounds in the exact shape you want to bake them in because after chilling, flattening or re-shaping them is very difficult. Cover with plasticwrap, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours; up to 5 days. Do not bake these cookies with dough that has not been properly chilled because they will spread.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F, line a baking sheet with a Silpat Non-Stick Baking Mat, parchment, or spray with cooking spray. Place dough on baking sheet, spaced at least 2 inches apart; I bake a maximum of 8 per sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until tops have just set, even if slightly undercooked, pale, and glossy in the center. They firm up as they cool and I recommend the lower end of the baking range because they taste best when softer. The cookies in the photos were baked for 8 minutes, with trays rotated once midway through baking.
  5. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 to 10 minutes before moving. Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Alternatively, unbaked dough can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months, so consider baking only as many cookies as desired and save the remaining dough to be baked in the future when desired.

photo 3-24 photo 2-24