Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Crockpot Honey Sesame Chicken

I have tried a few Asian crock pot recipes and they turned out pretty bleh, so I was trying not to have high hopes. BUT this one was finally a good one! This one was a fantastic one!! My husband rated it a million and a half stars. He liked it so much that he ate it for dinner, a midnight snack, and breakfast the next morning. It was so easy too!

Crockpot Honey Sesame Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (thighs would be fine too)
Salt and pepper
1 cup honey
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup diced onion
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (could also use olive oil or canola oil)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional - doesn't really add heat, just adds more flavor)
4 teaspoons cornstarch dissolved in 6 Tablespoons water
Sesame seeds

Directions:
Season both sides of chicken with lightly with salt and pepper, put into crock pot. In a small bowl, combine honey, soy sauce, onion, ketchup, oil, garlic and pepper flakes. Pour over chicken. Cook on low for 3-4 hours or on high 1 1/2 – 2 1/2 hours, or just until chicken is cooked through. Remove chicken from crock pot, leave sauce. Dissolve 4 teaspoons of cornstarch in 6 tablespoons of water and pour into crock pot. Stir to combine with sauce. Replace lid and cook sauce on high for ten more minutes or until slightly thickened. Cut chicken into bite size pieces, then return to pot and toss with sauce before serving. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve over rice or noodles.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Sunday Brunch Casserole


Recently, I helped with a brunch and brought two different breakfast casseroles. I had both in my recipe file, but couldn't remember the last time I had made these... I just knew they were good enough to be in my recipe file. I was so happy I decided to stick with these recipes and not try anything new. They both turned out delicious!
This Sunday Brunch Casserole was a different spin than your traditional breakfast casserole with sausage. I loved that it had bacon, eggs, cheese, and potatoes. Yum, yum! You can easily make it the night before and stick it in the fridge until morning. I will definitely be making this one again soon.

Sunday Brunch Bacon Casserole

  • 1/2 pound sliced bacon
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped green pepper
  • 12 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 (16 ounce) package frozen hash brown potatoes, thawed
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

  1. In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove to paper towels; drain, reserving 2 tablespoons drippings. Crumble bacon and set aside. In same skillet, saute onion and green pepper in drippings until tender; remove with a slotted spoon.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and milk. Stir in hash browns, cheese, salt, pepper, onion mixture and reserved bacon.
  3. Transfer to a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees F for 35-45 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Magical Layered Brownies

Any recipe that comes from Mel's Kitchen, I know is going to be fabulous. These brownies were so good. I had to get them out of my house before I ate every last one. That browned butter layer is killer. My kids loved having them in their lunches for a week. It's a great brownie to cut into squares and freeze individually.

Magical Layered Brownies

INGREDIENTS:
Brownies:
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Browned Butter Frosting:
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Glaze:
3 tablespoons butter
4 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9X13-inch aluminum pan with nonstick cooking spray and cut parchment paper to fit the bottom of the pan. Lightly grease the parchment paper. Set the pan aside.

For the brownies, in a small saucepan, melt the butter and chocolate, stirring until smooth. Set aside to cool slightly. In a large bowl, combine the sugar, eggs and salt. Mix with a handheld mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer for 3-4 minutes, until the mixture has lightened in color and is very thick. Fold in the warm (not hot!) chocolate/butter mixture. Stir in the flour and vanilla extract. Mix until well combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing evenly.

Bake the brownies for 25-30 minutes until the sides pull away from the pan just slightly. Remove the brownies from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack (about 1 1/2 hours).

For the browned butter frosting, place the stick of butter in a small saucepan and set it over low heat. It is best to not use a non-stick or dark coated pan in this step because it will be difficult to tell when the butter has turned brown. Let the butter melt over low heat and turn a caramel brown color, about 15 minutes. Watch carefully so the butter doesn’t burn. Once it has turned a nice medium-brown color, remove it from the heat. Pour the butter into a medium bowl. Immediately add the powdered sugar, heavy cream and vanilla. Mix well with an electric mixer uantil the frosting is smooth and thick.

Spread the frosting over the cooled brownies.

For the glaze, melt the butter and chocolate together in the microwave or on the stovetop until it is smooth. Pour the warm glaze over the frosted brownies. Tip the pan from side to side to even out the glaze over the frosting (or carefully spread with a knife or offset spatula). Chill the brownies until the glaze is set and the brownies are chilled through, about 1-2 hours. The brownies taste best cold.