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That summer weather has finally started to kick in.  We've had more than 2 weeks of sunny warm weather!  And I'm on a healthy diet until Tuesday.  Tuesday, I have one of my biggest track meets, so that means absolutely NO ice cream for me.  I need to cool down, it was so hot!  So then there's this milkshake...

I remember my mom making this milkshake when I was younger and we would go on vacation to India.  The weather there was unbearably hot, not counting mosquitoes.  I always used to ask for this milkshake.  It was an easy way to cool down with something healthy.

Apple Milkshake
Serves 2-3 people

Ingredients:
2 apples, cut DO NOT PEEL THEM
1 1/4 -- 1 1/2 cup milk
1/4 -- 1/2 cup granulated sugar

Wash and cut the apples, I used red delicious, but it doesn't matter as long as you don't use a tart apple.  Blend the apples with the milk in the blender.  Add the sugar and blend once more.  Empty the juice into glass cups and drink up!




Spicy Fries-Baked
Ingredients
3 medium sized potatoes
1 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Dash of coriander powder
Dash of oregano flakes (optional)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit.  Cover a few baking sheets with aluminum. 
Peel and cut the potatoes into strips that resemble french fries, wash them and drain the water.  In a medium or small bowl mix the spices together.  Add the potato strips into the spice mixture until they are coated.  Spread the fries on the pan.  Bake for 10-15 minutes DO NOT BURN THE SPICES!!

***Warning:
You may find these fries very spicy






Choux Pastry for Eclairs

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
Makes about 12-14 eclairs

Ingredients:
1 cup water
1/2 cup butter
1/8 teaspoon salt (I just added a pinch)
1 cup all purpose flour
4 beaten eggs
Nutella
Rice pudding

Grease a baking sheet and preheat the oven to 400.

In a medium saucepan, add the butter, water, and salt (see note).  Bring to a boil and add flour all at the same time.  Stir until the mixture becomes thick.  Cool for about 10 minutes and add the beaten eggs a little at a time.  Transfer to a piping bag and pipe strips that are 4 inches long, 1 inch thick wide, and 3/4 inch thick.  Bake on the prepared sheet for 35-40 minutes in a 400 degree oven or until golden brown.

Cool the eclairs for about 10 minutes and then cut in half.  Take out soft dough from inside (see note) and fill with rice pudding.  Spread Nutella over the top, enjoy!

Notes:
The butter does not need to be melted before you add the water and salt, it will melt while the water is boiling
If you do not take out the soft dough, it will taste eggy






Coffee Brownies
adapted from http://cakesharing.wordpress.com/2012/06/30/box-of-delicious-foodie-pen-pal-june-coffee-brownie-recipe/

1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
15 tablespoons butter (you'll melt this)
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 tablespoons ground coffee beans
3 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Grease a 13x9 pan and preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Melt the butter on the stove and add the sugar, salt, ground coffee, and cocoa powder until grainy.  Wait until the mixture cools a bit and then add the eggs, vanilla extract, and flour, transfer into a separate bowl if needed.  Pour the batter into the greased pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.





So the weather was momentarily warm a few days ago. But only for TWO DAYS!!  I mean come on, I used to wish for this weather, love love loved it!  How about sick sick sick of it?!  Because it's getting a little boring and cold and slippery and...I really could go on.  Anyone who lives in the United States, with the exception of Hawaii (luckies)  I would say consider Hawaii if only though, I dream on...These cookies are delicious http://www.the-girl-who-ate-everything.com/2010/05/chewy-oatmeal-raisin-cookies.html





Heart Baking Powder Biscuits
Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit racks in the middle
Serves 3-4 people
Bake for 12-15 minutes

Ingredients
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup milk
1/3 cup shortening
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt



Preheat oven to 425
Mix the dry ingredients together, split the 1/3 of shortening into 5 pieces and roll them around in the flour mixture.  Rub the shortening and flour mixture together to form small crumbs, it's okay to have a few big chunks.  Add the milk and toss with a fork to moisten the mixture.  Knead on a floured surface 10 times ONLY and roll out a 9 inches circle and cut biscuits with a heart shaped cutter.  Place on a greased baking sheet.  Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden.

Notes:
These taste amazing warm!
If the dough is too sticky to even put on the kneading surface add a small amount of flour.
Great with butter as well!
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M & M Chewy Oatmeal Cookie Bars
recipe adapted from http://fantasticfamilyfavorites.blogspot.com/2011/06/thick-and-chewy-m-cookie-bars.html

Ingredients:
1 1/4 cup uncooked oatmeal
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
12 tablespoons butter, melted (1 1/2 sticks)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup m & m's

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees fahrenheit.  Grease an 8 x 8 pan.
Combine the sugars with the melted butter, add the egg, yolk, and vanilla extract.  Gently stir in the rest of the ingredients except for the m & m's to form cookie dough.  Fold in the m & m's and put the cookie dough in the pan, smooth it out, bake about 30 minutes or until the bars look golden.

Notes:
If you want the bars to cook faster, use a 9 x 13 pan and bake for 20-25 minutes
These will get hard if you leave them in open air for more than two days, to ensure freshness and make sure the bars stay chewy, cut them and store in an airtight container
DO NOT refrigerate or the bars will harden






Herb Crackers

Serves 3-5 (though I could probably eat all of them!)

Ingredients
1 and 3/4 cups flour plus 2 tablespoons
1/4 teaspoon dried mint
1/4 teaspoon oregano
3/4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup olive oil

For coating
4 teaspoons flour
2 teaspoons garlic powder or salt

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a medium sized bowl, mix the 1 and 3/4 cups of flour with the herbs, salt, and baking powder.  Add the water and oil to form a dough, knead until the dough is elasticy.  In a small bowl, mix the flour for the coating and garlic powder together, rub the mixture on a kneading surface.  Take the dough and split it in to 3 dough balls, roll them 1/8 inch thick on the floured/garlic coated kneading surface.  Cut the dough into small squares and place them on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.  Bake for 8-10 minutes.

Notes:
If you don't want to cut the dough into squares, you can bake it as flat bread and break it into pieces later.






Biscoff French Toast Roll-ups

Ingredients
10 slices of bread without crust
2 eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon of biscoff cookie spread (1 teaspoon for each piece of bread)
oil or butter

In a small bowl, beat the eggs, add the milk, and sugar.  Flatten the bread with a rolling pin.  Spread some biscoff at the edge of the bread and roll the bread up, if the roll opens, put some biscoff at the other end as well.  Dip the bread in the egg mixture.  Melt butter on the stove in a pan and place the roll up on the side that has the 'seam', cook all sides until golden and the egg is cooked.  Put the roll ups on a paper towel to get out any excess butter.  Enjoy!




Flourless Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Preheat oven to 350
Makes yield 1 1/2 dozen

Ingredients
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 large egg

1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup chocolate chips (I used dark)

Preheat the oven the 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a bowl cream the peanut butter and sugar together until the mixture in light and creamy.  Beat the egg and incorporate it with the mixture.  Add the vanilla extract, baking soda, and salt.  Gently fold in the chocolate chips, chill for *10-15 minutes.  Shape into approx. 3 ounce balls and place on an ungreased baking sheet 2-3 inches apart from one another.  Bake at 350 for about 9 minutes or until they are lightly brown on the edges.  *Let the cookies cool for about 2 minutes before eating them.

Notes:
You don't need to chill the dough, but I would suggest to ensure a soft cookie
You must let these cookies cool because if you try to pick one up as soon as it comes out of the oven, it will break {trust me, I've tried!}





Makes 3-4 wraps
Prep time approximately and 1 hour
Chicken Potato Wrap
Ingredients
1 pack of whole wheat wraps
1/4 cup cooked alphabet pasta
1/4 teaspoon olive oil
Salt as needed

Chicken
1 pound chicken breast
1 small onion, chopped
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic paste
14 teaspoon ginger paste
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon hot sauce

Potatoes
1 potato cut in small bite sized cubes
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ketchup

Carrots
Half of a large carrot, about 1/4 cup
1/2 tsp ketchup
Dash of salt
Drop of olive oil

Cut the chicken into small bite sized cubes and wash the pieces well.  Coat a nonstick skillet with 1 tablespoon oil.  Fry the chopped onions in the skillet until they are translucent but not brown.  Add the chicken, water will come out even if you don't add any.  Mix in the garlic, ginger, turmeric, and chili powder.  The water will take about 25-30 minutes to evaporate.  Once the water dries up fully slowly pour in the hot sauce.

Coat a nonstick skillet with 1 tablespoon oil.  Peel the potato, cut it into cubes and wash them.  Fry the potatoes in oil for 10-15 minutes or until they are soft enough to chew.

Saute the carrot in a the ketchup and drop of alive oil for 5 minutes, add the salt.



Cook the pasta as you normally would.  Add the salt and olive oil to the pasta.  Mix the chicken, carrots, potatoes, and pasta together.  Assemble the wrap.






Bake time: 10-15 min
Yield: 1 1/2 dozen cookies
Serves: 3-5 people (depending on whether they are already eaten or not!) White Chocolate Cranberry Softies
½ cup butter
½ cup shortening
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 ¼ cup flour
1 tsp vanilla
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
½ cup oats
½ dried cranberries
½ cup white chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, grease about 3 baking sheets.  Cream the butter and shortening with sugar until fluffy.  Beat in the eggs one at a time until well combine.  Add the vanilla extract, salt, baking powder, and baking soda.  Mix in flour until the dough starts to thicken, then add the uncooked oats.  Gently fold in the cranberries and white chocolate chips so that they are evenly distribute.   Drop 3 ounce balls 2 1/2 in apart and bake for 10-15 minutes or until slightly golden or browned on the sides.

Notes:
Don't be clumsy like me and drop the egg :P
These cookies taste best warm
The cookies are softest the day they are baked
Please note that the cookies are not too sweet so add 1/4 cup brown sugar, I haven't tried this but it should work

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Originally, I wanted to do something related to fall; pumpkin, apple, cranberries...you know the type of fruits that are common during October and November.  And I must say, I hadn't planned on making an apple crisp, but what can I say?  Opportunity showed up at my front door.  After picking out apples in the store so that they looked perfect and sweet, I took an apple for lunch.  You know that face you make when something is really sour?  Well, imagine that face up 10 levels, they were that sour!  So, I figured, why not sweeten them up?  I mean, what have I got to lose?  While watching "Captain America" (which was a very good movie, but that's a story for another time) I whipped up a quick batch of apple crisp.  Boy, did those apples sweeten up, there was a tint of sourness, however that is what made it yummy.  My sister loved this crisp, but then again, she loves baked apples.  My other sister thought that the recipe needed more oats, which I wouldn't mind.  I added more oats to the original recipe and bam!  I promise you, if you like baked apples as much as my family, then you will enjoy this fall dessert.  Don't forget to Like A Sweet Load on Facebook!  Happy Eating!


Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
Bake for 45-55 minutes
Serves 3-4 people
Apple Crisp
Apples:
2 sour or baking apples
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
pinch of salt
pinch of cinnamon

Crisp:
3-4 tablespoon oats
2-1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
1-1/2 tablespoon flour
1/2 tablespoon cold butter

In a small bowl, slice the apples.  Add the sugar, salt, and cinnamon to the bowl.  Toss the ingredients around until well incorporated.  In another small bowl, cut the butter into the flour until crummy.  Mix in the brown sugar and oats.  Grease a glass baking dish and place the apples on the bottom.  Sprinkle the crisp topping on top of the apples.  Bake for 45-55 minutes in a 350 degree oven or until slightly golden and oats are crispy.  Serve warm.  








Baking Powder Biscuits
Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit racks in the middle
Serves 3-4 people
Bake for 12-15 minutes

Ingredients
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup milk
1/3 cup shortening
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

Mix the dry ingredients together, split the 1/3 of shortening into 5 pieces and roll them around in the flour mixture.  Rub the shortening and flour mixture together to form small crumbs, it's okay to have a few big chunks.  Add the milk and toss with a fork to moisten the mixture.  Knead on a floured surface 10 times ONLY and cut 9 inches thick with a 2 inch round cutter.  Place on a greased baking sheet.  Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden.

Notes:
These taste amazing warm!
If the dough is too sticky to even put on the kneading surface add a small amount of flour.
Great with butter as well!
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Strawberry Shorcakes
Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit
Bake for 12-15 minutes
Serves: 6-8  

Ingredients:
1/4 cup cold unsalted butter (cut in cubes)
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 pint strawberries (sliced)
whipped cream

Preheat the oven to 425 and butter the baking sheet.  In a large bowl, add the dry ingredients:flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt, mix them well.  Make a well in the center and add the pieces of butter.  Cut the butter into the flour mixture using 2 knives.  Rub the mixture with your fingertips to create fine crumbs.  Make another well in the center and pour the heavy cream, adding more if the mixture seems dry, toss with a fork or metal spatula to form larger crumbs.  Make sure not to over-mix otherwise the biscuits will come out heavy.  Press the crumbs together to form a somewhat rough dough.  Turn dough onto a floured kneading surface for a few seconds, the dough should stay a bit rough.  Role out 1/2 inch thick dough and cut with a round cookie cutter, place onto the greased baking sheet(evenly spacing the rounds).  Bake for 12-15 min or until lightly brown.  Let the biscuits cool.  Once cooled, cut the biscuit in half horizontally, be very careful.  Spoon the sliced strawberries on the bottom half of the biscuit and pile on whipped cream.  Top with other half of biscuit (lid half).  Serve right away.

Notes:
You can garnish with strawberry fans
Best served right away
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This recipe does not belong to me
Recipe source-Perfect Fruit Desserts by Anne Willan

Solo Almond Cake
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
Bake for 50-55 minutes
Serves 10-12
Ingredients:
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
3 eggs
1 can Solo Almond filling
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup milk

Preheat the oven to 350 and grease and flour a Bundt or swirl pan.  Cream the butter and granulated sugar until fluffy with an electric mixer.  Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating well.  Beat in the almond filling until well blended.  Stir in half of the milk and then 1 1/4 cup flour.  Stir in the other half of milk and add the rest of the flour, beat well.  Add the baking powder and salt, mix well.  Spread evenly into the prepared pan(s) and bake for about 50-55 minutes or until the cake tester comes out clean.  Cool completely before cutting. 

Notes:
This recipe does not belong to me it belongs to Solo Cake and Pastry filling company
If you are using a swirl pan, the cake will take longer to bake
Add a tweak less sugar if you don't want it too sugary
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Dear friends, we all know that I want to try and make up my own recipes.  Here it is, the next creation!  Blueberry jumble muffins, why jumble?  The answer is simple, lots of blueberries!  I had these blueberries in the fridge and then put them in the freezer so that they wouldn't get bad and I decided to use them.  Some of you may find this recipe similar to the banana blueberry muffins recipe I have posted because I needed a general idea for the recipe.  Almost everyone loves berries!  When I eat a muffin, I look for a lot of fruits inside.  So, imagine this, you bit into this light, fluffy muffin, and in your first bit, an explosion of berries and juice occurs in your mouth!  The incredible taste of the muffins soaks in and you just know you want more.  These are that good, that's right!  My personal favorite part is the explosion that occurs with the blueberries.  Need I say more, or have I been persuasive enough?  Don't forget to like A Sweet Load on facebook!  Happy Eating!

Blueberrry Jumble Muffins
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
Bake for 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean
Makes yield 22 standard muffins

Ingredients:
2 cups blueberries
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
2 1/3 cup all purpose flour
1 cup+ 4 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup oil
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  In a large bowl mix together the flour,baking soda, baking powder, salt, and sugar.  Crack the eggs and beat them until they are fluffy.  Add the eggs to the dry mixture, slowly pour in the oil.  Combine the mixture that you have so far with a large spoon.  Dribble the milk in and mix/beat to make sure there are no batter balls.  The mixture should be smooth and a bit thick.  Slowly incorporate the blueberries, there should be a lot!  Spoon the mixture out into muffin tins/foil and bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.  You will also know they are ready once the muffins start to turn golden brown on top.

Notes:
These muffins can be served with coffee and tea
Blueberry muffins will make a nice breakfast
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Easy Ketchup Fried Carrot Spaghetti
1/4 cup premade spaghetti
1/4 cup onion
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp salt
1/8 cup ketchup
half of a large carrot
half of a plum tomato
5 kale leaves
oil
water
chicken(optional)

Make the spaghetti as you usually do.  Coat the bottom of the saucepan with oil and start to fry the onions.  Fry the onions until they are a golden color and mix in the chili powder and turmeric.  Make sure that the spices do not stick or burn!  Cut the carrot and plum tomato in small pieces and add them to the saucepan.  Pour in the 1/8 cup of ketchup and fry for about 2 minutes.  Add a thin layer of water, mix in the kale and then close the top for about 2 -3 minutes.  Once the water is dry, add the tablespoon of ketchup and fry for another minute.  Sprinkle the salt of the mixture and add the spaghetti.  Add chicken if you wish.

Spiced Pita Chips
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
Serves: about 3 people
Beware...Spice alert

Pocket pita breads
1 1/2 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Teaspoon salt
1 Teaspoon chili powder
1/4 Teaspoon cumin powder
Dash coriander powder
Black pepper-- sprinkled on top

Cut the pitas in half, then cut the halves into 4ths or 5ths.  Separate the pieces of bread from one another, for example: Since you are using pocket pitas, once you make a cut you will end up with not 1, but 2 pieces.  Put the pieces of bread in a large bowl and add half of the chili powder and salt. Toss or shake the the bread in the bowl, making sure to get most of the chili powder and salt on as many pita pieces as possible.  Add the rest of the ingredients and toss (or shake) once more.  Place the pieces on a baking sheet covered with aluminium and bake in a 400 degree F oven for 10 min or until crispy.



It is summer in the United States and boy is it hot!  Thankfully the weather is cooling off a bit.  And thats good, because I can go for my 1-2 mile run at the park without being too exhausted.  We all need to cool off though, and when you're looking for a healthy diet, this icy is right there.  Ice cream's good, however, ice creams can be very high in saturated fats, almost 25%.  This icy is so simple, yummy, and healthy.  So next time you want to grab for that ice cream, whip this up instead for a great summer time treat.  If you buy a mango that is really sweet, you won't even need to add sugar.  A sweet mango is usually found in local indian stores, that is where I got mine.  Happy eating!  And don't forget to like A Sweet Load on Facebook!

Mango Icy
3 cups mango puree
1-2 tablespoons sugar
5 tablespoons milk

Mix on the ingredients together in the blender and blend.  Pour the mixture into a carton or ziploc box and freeze for 6-8 hours.  When you are serving the icy take it out 10 minutes before (it will come out easier this way).





Last weekend was father's day and we all know how much I love my parents!  This father's day, I didn't want to make something sweet.  I love sweet things, but I'm trying to also keep a healthy diet.  The same would go for my family, so there I was sitting, thinking, and asking people in google+ communities what I should do.  Before I got an answer from the community something popped in my head.  I thought, "What better idea than french bread."  There and then I searched and came across a recipe for french bread.  This recipe is not just a recipe, it's Julia Child's recipe, and in the cooking and baking world, her food was never known to disappoint.  Although baking bread takes a lot of patience, it was so worth the wait.  I will definitely use this recipe over and over again.  My dad was a huge fan of this bread.  I got this recipe from a site called www.barbarabakes.com and would like to share it with you.  You should definitely use this recipe.  Happy Eating!

Julia Child's French Bread Recipe:
Rising time: about 6 hours
Preheat oven to: 450 degrees Fahrenheit

Ingredients:
1 packet instant yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 cup warm water (120-130 degrees)

Combine the yeast, 2 1/2 cups of the flour(not all of the flour) and salt in a large bowl.  Mix them together, slowly pour in the warm water until a shaggy dough forms (I used my hands to mix in the water).  Add in the remaining flour slowly, make a soft dough (if it starts to become a soft dough before you've used all the rest of the flour, it's okay).  On a kneading surface and let it rest for about 2-3 minutes.  Return the dough to the mixing bowl and let it rise at room temperature until it is x3 1/2 its original volume.  This will take about 3 hours.  Punch down the dough and let it rise again until not quite tripled in volume.  This will take about 1 1/2 - 2 hours.  Using parchment, or a linen towel, prepare the rising surface.  Rub flour onto the parchment or towel and place it on a baking sheet.  Once the dough has risen, divide it into the number of pieces you would like(loaves).  Let the dough rest for 5 minutes.  Shape the loaves and place them on the prepare towel or parchment.  Cover the loaves and let them rise until tripled, this will take about 1 1/2 - 2 1/2 hours.  Preheat the oven to 450 degrees and set up a simulated oven.  Place baking stones (I used quarry tiles) on the center rack, beneath the stone, on the rack under at least 4 inches away place a metal broiler pan.  Add a cup of water (refilling as you go along) to the broiler pan.  Slash the loaves and spray them with a spray bottle.  Slide them into the oven.  Bake for 25 minutes until they are a golden brown.  If you are using parchment, you will have to remove it after about 10 -15 minutes to crisp-en up the bottom crust.  Spray the loaves 3 times while baking them.

Notes:
This french bread is best eaten warm.
Make sure you are using stones safe for the oven.
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Dear friends, I love baked ziti.  I honestly can't remember when my obsession started, but it was recently!  I got a few recipes online but I decided not to go with them.  Instead I saw a recipe for Baked Ziti on the back of the pasta box.  No, I did not go with that recipe either.  However, it gave me an idea.  I mixed the amounts myself, I was my own boss with the measurements.  Sure, the mixer looked pink when I mixed together the sauce and ricotta cheese.  But this was the most amazing thing I have ever tasted, nor did I know I would be able to pull it off.  Waiting for it to cook in the oven.... waiting and waiting.  And finally, after a forty minute wait, just like that, the Baked Ziti was finished.  I ran out to my dad and sister, who where out fixing the car, and screamed "Lunch is ready!"  Maybe they were hungry, or just as anxious to try it as I was.  The results were really surprising because it was really amazing.  I will definitely use this recipe a lot.  Thanks to other online recipes, I was able to make up my own.  Baked Ziti is the perfect party food that will leave your guests begging for more.  What are you waiting for?  Dig in!  Happy Eating! 


























Serves: 6-8
Preheat oven: 375 degrees Fahrenheit
Ingredients:
12 ounces cooked ziti pasta
2 (15 ounce) cans Italian Herb Tomato Sauce
15 ounce package ricotta cheese
8 ounce packet mozzarella cheese (shredded)




Cook the pasta as you regularly would.  After draining the water from the pasta keep it in the pot.  Make sure there is no heat on the stove.  Mix in the ricotta cheese and both cans of Italian Herb Sauce.  Sprinkle half of the mozzarella cheese into the mixture.  In a 6 x 12 glass pan (greased) pour in the mixture.  Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella over the mixture and place in the oven (375 degrees) with the racks in the center.  Cook for about 40 minutes or until bubbly.
Notes:
Baked ziti tastes best hot
Do not eat it right out of the oven, you don't want to burn your tongue!
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Banana Blueberry Muffins
I have recently made a switch, to more real food.  No fear, I still bake cookies, cakes, decorate.  This was just one of those things though, healthy!  My mom got this recipe from a friend, and we've used it every since.  Sometimes I use it just to make banana bread.  These make delicious muffins, although cranberries taste much better with the banana.  As you know, to my despair, it's not cranberry season!  Now, I can always use dried cranberries and plump them up in water, but the tart taste would never be the same.  Therefore, I looked for raspberries, apparently, it's not raspberry season either!  If they are sold in the store, they are very expensive for a small carton.  So there I was berry-less and it hit me, Blueberries!  These make a tasty treat and I am sure that you will be very happy with it. Don't forget, A Sweet Load is on facebook!  Happy eating!

The bananas must be very ripe, not rotten!

Mash up the bananas

In another large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients




In the same bowl containing the bananas, add the wet ingredients

Fold in the dry mixture

Add the blueberries

Bake and enjoy!


















































































































































































Makes: 24 muffins
Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit
Bake for: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

3 eggs
2 1/3 cup flour
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
3 bananas (very ripe)
2/3 cup yogurt
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
6-8 oz blueberry carton (don't forget to wash them)
How to:
With a potato masher, mash the bananas well.  In a separate bowl, mix the flour,sugar, baking powder, and baking soda together.  Go back to the bowl with the bananas, add the yogurt, oil, and eggs.  Fold the dry mixture into the banana mixture.  Do this slowly, make sure that there are no batter balls.  Add the blueberries.  Line a muffin pan with muffin cups and scoop even amounts of batter in each cup (I used a ice cream scoop).  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.


Amazingly Amazing Tiramisu

You can see the ladyfinger layers.

Let me start with, THIS RECIPE DOES NOT BELONG TO ME!  All credits to Richard Simmons, the author of the recipe book: "Sweetie Pie."  I have seen and heard of this delicious Italian treat for years.  Those of you who don't know, Tiramisu is a type of cream dessert, with coffee soaked layers of ladyfingers.  I have always wanted to make or try Tiramisu, but when I looked for a recipe, most of them involved raw egg.  I don't like to eat things with raw eggs, and those of you that know, Tiramisu is not cooked, but chilled.  I scored when I was looking through my "Sweetie Pie" book.  This recipe originally has coffee liqueur, but my family does not use alcohol so I substituted cold coffee instead.  A lot of people think mascarpone tastes like cream cheese, do not make this mistake, they are completely different.  Mascarpone is a thick Italian cheese. I got my mascarpone at Shoprite in the deli area with the cheeses.  I made my own ladyfingers, since they are hard to find in a lot of stores.  Without farther ado.....happy eating!



Tiramisu

Makes 10 servings
Prep time: 20 minutes and chilling

Ingredients:

8 ounces mascarpone
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cold coffee
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 and 1/2 cup heavy cream
24 pack (or homemade) ladyfingers, can be found in 7 ounce packages
1 cup cooled strong brewed coffee
1 cup semisweet chocolate (grated)
1 tablespoon confectioners sugar (optional)

In a large, mix or beat with mixer, mascarpone and sugar.  Add the coffee and vanilla extract.  In another bowl, with electric mixer, beat cream until peaks form.  Mix or fold whipped cream into the mascarpone mixture.  In a pan (large enough to fit 12 ladyfingers on the bottom) line the ladyfingers.  It's okay if there are a few gaps.  Sprinkle half of the coffee on the ladyfingers, don't worry, the sponginess of the ladyfingers should absorb the coffee.  Spread half of the mascarpone cream on top of the ladyfingers, and sprinkle with half of the chocolate.  Arrange the ladyfingers into another layer on top of the chocolate and sprinkle with the rest of the coffee.  Spread on mascarpone mixture and sprinkle with grated chocolate.  Cover well and refrigerate for 4 hours ( I kept it overnight, I suggest letting it chill overnight).  Optional: sprinkle with confectioners sugar when serving.
It was soo delicious!!
Notes:
It is important that the coffee is cooled, otherwise it can ruin your fridge.
Remember, We are on facebook as "A Sweet Load"! 


Applesauce Cookies


From as long as I can remember, I have been relying on the internet for some of my recipes(other than my family ones).  I decided some time ago that I want to make up my own, every time someone has a recipe on their site or blog, they seem to have made it up themselves.  If I'm going to have this blog, I think I'll start making up my own as well, and I'll test and test until my creation is perfect!  This is one of my first recipes and is sooo easy to whip up.  These cookies are perfect for parties, and my sister say's it would serve as a good muffin( I don't know if that would work though).  These cookies remind me of a quiet, happy family gathering, of home, and something about it makes it perfect for any season.  When I tell you how much flour I used, you'll think I'm crazy, but look no farther for a yummy cookie recipe.  Happy eating!

Make: yield 16 large cookies
Preheat oven to: 350 degrees
Bake for: 14 minutes or until brown

Applesauce Cookies
1 small container Mott's apple-peach applesauce( I used apple-peach, you might be able to use one that suits your taste like mixed berry) (approx: 1 cup)
1 cup and a tablespoon flour(This is right)
1/2 cup sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter(softened)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon salt


Cream the sugar and butter together, in a separate bowl beat the egg until light and fluffy-add to creamed sugar.  Next, add vanilla extract to the bowl.  Slowly mix in flour, baking powder, and salt.  Finally pour in the applesauce and mix the ingredients together.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Line baking sheets (pan) with aluminum foil, and drop cookie batter on to the foil keeping them 2 inches apart.  Bake for 14 min. or until they are slightly brown.  This recipe makes about 16 large cookies.


Things to remember:
These cookies taste the best while they're still warm.
1 cup and a tbsp is the perfect amount because it doesn't make the batter too tough or too watery.
Tell me what you think about these cookies in the comments below!  Happy eating!











Healthy Apple Muffins

I got this recipe from a teacher, she made it in class and I really liked it.  So I got the recipe and modified it, my family loved them.  These apple muffins have a touch of sweetness and can be perfect for any occasion.  I have to say, I was a little iffy about the recipe when I modified it, because almond extract can smell really strong.  At the end they ended up fine.  These muffins have a slightly grainy taste because of the 1 cup wheat flour but can easily be fixed by adding 1 cup white flour instead.  Enjoy!
Makes 12 muffins

Apple Muffins

1/4 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup milk
1 egg
1/2 cup white flour(all purpose works too)
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon yogurt
1 drop almond extract
1 apple


1.Preheat oven to 400

2.Stand mixer(hand works too) mix butter, egg and milk.
3..Mix in white flour, wheat flour, sugar,baking powder, salt, cinnamon, vanilla extract, yogurt, and almond extract. Stir well.
4.Add in apple.
5.Drop in muffin pan, bake for 15 min.

Remember if you don't want too much of a grainy flavor add 1 cup white flour and 1/2 cup wheat flour. This recipe also works well with other fruits.









'You Can Call Them Oatmeal Cookies' Cookies
I'm not sure what I was expecting when I came up with this recipe.  I knew I would need to start with the basic ingredients that one usually adds to a cookie.  So I had my shopping list: butter (had it already), flour, vanilla extract, baking powder, eggs, salt, and cinnamon.  Well I had the basics, now what?  Healthy?  Sure, in a form.


Doesn't the cookie look cool as watercolor animation?






























Healthy but good, okay what about oatmeal?  It was the best way to go.  I must say first, these cookies aren't the type that really taste like oatmeal.  The oatmeal in fact, gives it somewhat of a flavor, rather than really tasting them.  I didn't have any experience in making oatmeal cookies therefore my first instinct was to cook the oats first then add it to the dough.  You see I wanted to make my cookies unique, but cooking them could've led to disaster!  Anyway these came out great and are good for 4:00 o'clock tea time!  Happy eating!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
Makes: about 19 large cookies
Bake time: about 10 minutes


'You Can Call Them Oatmeal Cookies' Oatmeal Cookies
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup uncooked oats
8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter (1 stick)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees with racks in the middle.  Cube the butter and add the sugar and flour together.  Cut the butter into the sugar and flour with a knife.  Blend in the rest of the dry ingredient once the butter makes the flour and sugar mixture crummy.  In a separate bowl beat the egg, add to the ingredients bowl.  Finally mix in vanilla extract, a dough should have formed by now.  In a cookie sheet lined with aluminum and lightly greased with butter, form round balls with the dough.  The ball sizes should be fairly small, about 3 to 4 ounces big.  Place in the oven and bake for about 10 minutes or until they are slightly brown on the sides.  Most importantly, ENJOY!

Notes:
These taste amazing warm
If you like gingerbread cookies, once they cool these cookies have a light gingerbread taste.
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