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Monday, May 28, 2012

Larry The Cable Guy Cornbread

Pin It Larry The Cable Guy Cornbread

My slice of Larry The Cable Guy Cornbread
I was shopping at my local dollar store Deals and came across a line of products by Larry The Cable Guy. I thought this was funny and could not pass it up, so I purchased Larry The Cable Guy Corn Muffin mix for $1. Instead of Corn Muffins, I made Cornbread this past weekend. It took just a few minutes to mix everything and I was surprised at how good the Cornbread tasted. It was rich, moist and flavorful.

Larry The Cable Guy Corn Muffin and greased Loaf Pan ready for baking
Ingredients

1 Larry the Cable Guy Corn Muffin box

1/2 cup Milk

2 Extra Large Eggs

1/2 teaspoon granulated Sugar (optional)

Cornbread out the oven.
Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Grease a loaf pan.

Add Corn Muffin mixture in a large bowl, Milk, Eggs and Sugar. Stir ingredients together until blended.

Let mixture rest in bowl for 5 minutes before you pour it into the loaf pan.

Bake for 32-36 minutes or until golden brown. Test with cake tester or toothpick. If it comes out clean, it is ready.

Allen rocking his Larry-like cap and holding up the box
Cool in pan for 10 minutes and then place on cooling rack face up. Serve warm with a little Butter.

Larry The Cable Guy Cornbread
Larry The Cable Guy food products help suport his charity, the Git-R-Done Foundation whose mission is to help children and veterans. The Git-R-Done Foundation is also an advocate and supporter for the International Hip Dysplasia Institute.

Visit Larry The Cable Guy's Git-R-Done Foundation for further information: http://www.gitrdonefoundation.org/.

Um, Git-R-Done. Ha, ha...

-Sophia/Two Frys

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Lindt Chili Dark

Pin It Lindt Chili Dark

Lindt Excellence Chili Dark
I am a big fan of Lindt chocolates and when Allen brought home a bar of Lindt Excellence Chili Dark I was intrigued and somewhat skeptical. I am not as crazy about spicy food like Allen is and was not sure I would like this chocolate. Visually the chocolate draws you in with its deep dark brown color. I was enticed since I love the taste of dark chocolate. Upon first bite you taste the richness of the dark chocolate and then you get a hint of spicy red chili which lingers for a moment. The spice is not overbearing but there is a level of intensity to it that is pleasing and warm. The flavor combination of dark chocolate with the red chili works real well.  

For further information about Lindt chocolates, go to: http://www.lindt.com/.

-Sophia and Allen/Two Frys

Monday, May 14, 2012

Dominican Cake

Pin It Dominican Cake

Dominican Cake for my Mom!
This is the fourth Dominican Cake I have made since starting this blog and it is my favorite cake. It is a rich and dense cake and so delicious. For Mother's Day yesterday, I made one for my Mom and it is her favorite cake as well.

You can see my previous post here: http://twofrys.blogspot.com/2011/02/dominican-cake.html.

This time, I added Lemon Zest and used Half-and-Half instead of Whole Milk. You could use Whole Milk but it is what I had on hand and it worked great with the recipe. I also used Unsalted Butter instead of Salted Butter though salted is what the original recipe calls for.

Ingredients

2 sticks Unsalted Butter, softened

2 cups Sugar

4 Extra Large Eggs

1 teaspoon Clear Vanilla Extract

3 cups All Purpose Flour

3 teaspoons Baking Powder

1 cup Half and Half

1/8 teaspoon Salt

1 tablespoon Lemon Zest

1/2 jar Guava Jelly (Goya)

2 drops Red Food Coloring

Directions

Grease 2 9" inch round baking pans with Butter and line with parchment paper. Grease over parchment paper and then sprinkle Flour lightly.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium size bowl, sift Baking Powder and Flour. Put aside for now.

I used a hand held mixer but you can use a stand mixer as well. Mix Butter until it is creamy and then add Sugar little by little; continue mixing until it is light and creamy.

Add Eggs one at a time, mixing well.

Add in some of the Flour, mix well and then add some of the Half-and-Half. Do this a few times ending with Flour. Scrape sides of bowl with a spatula to make sure you have incorporated all the ingredients.

Add Vanilla, Lemon Zest and Salt, and mix well.

Spread cake batter evenly between the 2 pans using a spatula to smooth out the top.

Bake for 40-50 minutes. Cake is ready when toothpick comes out clean. Oven temperatures vary so keep an eye on the cake so you do not over brown it.

While cake is baking, make the frosting.

My piece of Dominican Cake
Merengue (Frosting) Ingredients

3 Egg Whites

1 1/2 cup Sugar

1/2 cup Water

1 teaspoon freshly squeezed Lemon juice

Using a hand held mixer or stand mixer, mix Egg Whites for several minutes until nice stiff peaks form. Put aside for now.

In a small pan, stir Sugar, Water, and Lemon juice on low heat until Sugar dissolves and Caramel forms a syrup-like texture. Keep an eye on it so it does not burn. Be patient here. This step is a little tricky and easy to screw up.

Take hot Caramel and mix in little by little to Egg White mixture. Keep mixing until it reaches a thick but soft consistency. Add 2 drops of Red Food Coloring to make the Frosting pink.

Put the Frosting aside and let it cool completely before decorating the cake.

Place cakes on cooling racks for about 20-25 minutes. Remove from baking pans top side up onto cooling racks so they completely cool for another 30-35 minutes. Cakes must cool completely before you frost them.

Trim top layer of the cakes using a serrated knife to make a flat top. Trimming is necessary so the cake rests straight when stacked.

Cake Filling

I used Guava Jelly (Goya) since this is a very traditional Dominican filling but use any filling you like. I have used Pineapple Preserves and Dulce de Leche fillings in the past.

Goya Guava Jelly for the cake filling
Decorate Cake

Once cake and Frosting have cooled completely, place bottom layer of cake on cake turntable, top side down. Place some Frosting in a piping bag with tip #12 (Wilton) and holding bag steady ,turn turntable around slowly as you squeeze to pipe icing about 1/4 inch from the outside layer of the cake. This will prevent filling from seeping out.

Fill the inside of the cake circle with Guava Jelly using a smooth finish icing spatula.

Place the second layer on top, bottom side up and decorate with Frosting.

Frosting needs to set for a few hours in the fridge. I always place cake in cake caddy to keep it covered. For this cake I barely had enough time to frost the cake before taking it to my Mom's due to time constraints and it only set in the fridge for a few hours. You can bake this cake 1 day ahead and next time I bake a cake I will do the same. Just bring to room temperature before you serve. Serve with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream and Strawberries.

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Steak with Peppers and Onions and Basil Rice

Pin It Steak with Peppers and Onions and Basil Rice

Steak with Peppers and Onions and Basil Rice
When Allen picked up some groceries the other day he bought a bag of sweet mini Peppers in different sizes (yellow, orange and red). I planned a Steak dinner last night and thought the Peppers with Onions would be a perfect combo. I served this with Basil Rice using fresh Greek Basil from Allen's indoor urban garden and Salad. The Basil adds a nice aromatic touch and great taste to the Rice. The Hot Sauce compliments the Worcestershire Sauce and Seasonings to the Steak, Peppers and Onions and gives it a robust flavor. Allen received Island Fever Crucian Hot Sauce from the Virgin Islands to cover on the blog and we love it (forthcoming post on Chicken Wings later this week). The slow-smoked Chipotle Peppers and secret blend of ingredients in Island Fever Crucian Hot Sauce round out this meal perfectly. You can order Island Fever Crucian Hot Sauce here: http://www.islandfeverflavors.com/.

Greek Basil from Allen's indoor urban garden
Ingredients

1 bag of Sweet Mini Peppers or 3 regular size yellow, orange and red ones, chopped.

1 Yellow Onion, chopped.

1 lb Top Round Steak, cut into chunks.

1 cup Long Grain Rice (Carolina).

Kosher Salt.

2 tablespoons Steak Seasoning (Badia Gourmet Blends).

1 tablespoon fresh Greek Basil, chopped.

2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil.

2 tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce.

1 tablespoon Hot Sauce (Island Fever Crucian Hot Sauce).

Basil Rice
Directions

Rice

For the Rice, we use a Rice Cooker and follow Water/Rice ratio according to the brand (Rival) we use. Cook your Rice on stove top using directions on package or in rice cooker.

Season with Kosher Salt.

Just before serving, add Basil and combine.

Peppers and Onions
Steak, Peppers, Onions

Place Steak in a medium bowl and season with Kosher Salt, Steak Seasoning and Worcestershire Sauce; combine.

Heat skillet on medium heat with Vegetable Oil and when hot, add chopped Peppers and Onions.

Steak cooking with Peppers and Onions
Cook for just a few minutes until Onions are translucent.

Add Steak, Hot Sauce and stir.

Cook Steak for a few minutes, stirring often.

Serve Steak, Peppers and Onions over Basil Rice with a Salad.

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Monday, May 7, 2012

SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins

Pin It SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins

SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot flavor with Tortilla Chips.
SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot flavor package yields alot and is great for fans of heat. I made this salsa to go with my Cinco de Mayo Taco Night Feast and served it with Tortilla Chips. SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot flavor is really spicy and the right combination of spices and dried peppers. I used Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes to give the salsa an extra kick of flavor. This is a quick way to make a large portion of salsa. You can also use SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot with 2 freshly diced tomatoes for a Pico de Gallo dip. The canned tomatoes work very well for this recipe and with the garlic, gives the salsa an even greater boost of bold taste. I recommend SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot for serious heat lovers and is not for heat intolerant folks. If you are the latter like my wife (it was way too spicy for her), you can try their milder choices: Salsa Fixins - Medium and Mild Flavors.

Sucklebusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot flavor
Ingredients

1 packet SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot

1 14 oz can Diced Fire Roasted Tomatoes with Garlic (Hunts)

1/4 cup Water

SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot flavor and Hunts Diced Fire Roasted Tomatoes with Garlic
Directions

In a medium size bowl, add contents of SuckleBusters Hot Salsa Mix, Fire Roasted Tomatoes and Water and combine.

Cover with plastic wrap and chill in fridge for about 1-2 hours and to let moisture absorb into salsa fixins.

For further information and to order SuckleBusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot flavor or any of their other products, go to: http://www.sucklebusters.com/.

-Allen/Two Frys

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Sombrero Cookies

Pin It Sombrero Cookies

Close up of some Sombrero Cookies
I planned to make Tres Leche Cake (will bake one soon) for our Cinco de Mayo dessert, but instead made these adorable Sombrero Cookies. I first saw these Sombrero Cookies on Random Thoughts of a SUPERMOM blog: http://the-wilson-world.blogspot.com/2011/05/cinco-de-mayo-treats-sombrero-cookies.html and instructions came from Disney FamilyFun Magazine: http://familyfun.go.com/recipes/sombrero-cookies-684582/. I thank them both for inspiring me to makes these cookies. Instead of buying store bought Sugar Cookies, I baked some with a little help from Betty Crocker. The Sombrero Cookies taste great and they are so darn cute too!

Cookies out of the oven, cooling
Ingredients

1 package Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie Mix.

1/2 cup, 1 stick Unsalted Butter, softened.

1 Extra Large Egg.

2 tablespoons All-Purpose Flour, + extra for rolling pin and work surface.

1 teaspoon Whole Milk.

1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract.

1/2 1 10.5 oz Spice Drops.

Circle Cookie Cutter.

1 Betty Crocker Decorating Cookie Icing.

1/2 bottle Wilton Sprinkles Rainbow Nonpareils.

Wilton Rainbow Nonpareils

Betty Crocker Decorating Icing

Spice Drops
Directions

Make Sugar Cookies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, add contents of Sugar Cookie Mix, Butter, Egg, Milk, Vanilla Extract and Flour.

Using handheld mixer, combine on medium speed until Dough forms.

I prefer to use the mixer half way and then my hands to incorporate everything perfectly.

Form Dough into a ball and cover in plastic wrap.

Chill Dough in fridge for at least half an hour so it is easier to work with.

Making circle around Cookie with Decorating Icing

Placing Icing in center of Cookie for Spice Drop

Added Spice Drop and Sprinkles over and around Icing
Place some Flour on a small plate and put round Cookie Cutter in it. Dip Cookie Cutter in Flour often to prevent Dough from sticking.

Lightly sprinkle Flour on work surface and rolling pin so Dough does not stick. Repeat if needed to prevent Dough from sticking.

Separate Dough in half, keeping other half in the fridge until you are ready for it.

Roll Dough and cutout round Cookies.

Do the same with remaining Dough.

Place Cookies on ungreased baking sheets and space apart so they do not stick together as they bake.

Bake for 7-10 minutes, or until edges are golden brown.

Leave in baking sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer to cooling racks to cool completely, approximately 1 hour.

Decorated Sombrero Cookies
Decorating Sombrero Cookies

Leave cookies on cooling racks and for each cookie do the following:

Place Sprinkles in a plate.

Cut tip off Betty Crocker Decorating Cookie Icing and squeeze out Icing in a circular motion around the Cookie (see photo).

Lovely Sombrero Cookies
Take Cookie and place face down on Sprinkles and press down gently. Shake off excess Sprinkles.
Return Cookie face up to cooling rack (see photo).

Take Cookie Icing and squeeze out a round circle in the center of the cookie (see photo).

Sombrero Cookies
Place 1 Spice Drop over Icing and press down then with the Cookie in your hand place above plate with Sprinkles and add some around the Icing sticking out of the Spice Drop. Shake off gently any excess Sprinkles (see photo).

Keep doing this for the remaining 23 cookies.

Enjoy!

Sophia/Two Frys

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Cinco de Mayo Taco Night

Pin It Cinco de Mayo Taco Night

Taco Night Cinco de Mayo Feast
Americans will come up with any excuse for a celebration and Cinco de Mayo happens to be one of those holidays. If you do not know the significance of Cinco de Mayo, read all about it here: http://www.history.com/topics/cinco-de-mayo. We planned on having Taco Night tonight and had alot of fun making our meal. Allen cooked up this delicious and festive feast and I was his Sous Chef.

Ingredients

1 box Hard & Soft Taco Dinner Kit with 6 Taco Shells, 6 Flour Tortillas, Mild Taco Sauce and Seasoning Mix (Old El Paso).

1 pound Ground Veal (use any ground meat you like).

1/2 head Iceberg Lettuce, grated.

1/2 1 8 oz Mexican Blend Cheese Cheddar, Monterey Jack, Colby, Mozzarella (Sargento).

1 2.25 oz can Black Sliced Ripe Olives.

1 4 oz can Fire Roasted Diced Green Chiles (Ortega).

1/2 1 7 oz can Chipotle Peppers In Adobo Sauce (Goya).

1 16 oz can Traditional Refried Beans (Old El Paso).

1 14.5 oz can Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes with Garlic (Hunts).

1 8 oz Light Sour Cream (Daisy).

1 6.8 oz Spanish Rice (Rice & Vermicelli with Green Peppers & Seasonings).

2 packages Concord Foods Gaucamole Mix.

4 Hass Avocados.

1 package Sucklebusters Fresh Salsa Fixins Hot.

1 bag On The Border Tortilla Chips Cafe Style.

2 tablespoons Butter.

Kosher Salt.

Black Pepper.

Directions

Meat with Taco Seasoning
Meat

Season Meat with Kosher Salt and Black Pepper.

When skillet is hot, add Meat and cook until browned on medium heat.

Add 1/4 cup Water and Seasoning Mix, combine and heat on medium-low until thickened.

Spanish Rice with Chipotle Peppers
Rice

In a large pot, add 2 tablespoons Butter and Rice mixture and brown.

Stir in 2 cups Water, Seasoning packet and instead of Tomatoes, add 1 tablespoon of chopped Chiptole Peppers (with seeds out) and 1 tablespoon of the Chipotle Peppers Adobo Sauce.

Heat to boiling.

Cover and reduce to low heat, cook for 15-20 minutes or until Rice is tender.

Refried Beans
Refried Beans

In a medium size pot, add Refried Beans cover, and heat on low until hot.

Gaucamole, Salsa, Tortilla Chips
Gaucamole

Slice and mash with a fork Avocados and combine well with Gaucamole Mix. Enjoy with Tortilla Chips.

Salsa

Not for the weak. Enjoy with Tortilla Chips. See post Monday for details.

Taco and Tortilla Fixins
Tacos and Flour Tortillas

Take Tacos and heat in microwave for about 45 seconds. Do the same for the Flour Tortillas.

One of my Tacos, yum!
Fixins

Set up all your fixins (Sour Cream, Lettuce, Tomatoes, Olives, Green Chiles, Cheese, Salsa, Gaucamole) for the Tacos and Tortillas in a line or in a Taco Organizer (as shown) and make your Tacos and Tortillas. For space reasons and to keep it hot, I left the Rice, Meat and Refried Beans on the stovetop.

Enjoy leftovers the next day for lunch. :)

-Sophia and Allen/Two Frys