"Sometimes I wonder about my life. I lead a small life - well, valuable, but small - and sometimes I wonder, do I do it because I like it, or because I haven't been brave?" - Kathleen Kelly (You've Got Mail)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Classic Alfredo Sauce

This stuff is soooo very sinful but we wanted to make something special on Valentine's Day that we both love and that we don't normally eat. This was perfect! Great for the special occasion. Plus it was really easy to make. I didn't think to take a picture of it, but here's one that Randy snapped when we were eating dinner :)

Classic Alfredo Sauce (adapted from here)

1/4 c. butter
1 c. heavy cream
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 c. freshly shredded parmesan cheese

Melt the butter in a small saucepan and add the cream and garlic. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 5 minutes. Next, whisk in the cheese until completely melted and smooth. Serves 4.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Chocolate Coconut M&M Cookies

It's been a while since I've make cookies, especially chocolate cookies...my husbands favorite! My brother gave me several bags of coconut M&Ms (so good!) so I decided to make cookies with them. I'm so glad i did! These cookies are amazing. Coconut+Chocolate is an amazing combo! If you can find coconut M&Ms, you gotta make these!

Chocolate Coconut M&M Cookies

2 c. all purpose flour
2/3 c. cocoa powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. coconut extract
1 c. butter or margarine, softened
2 eggs
1 c. chopped coconut M&Ms
3/4 c. flaked coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, grease a couple cookie sheets and set aside. Combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in a small bowl and set aside. In a separate mixing bowl, cream together the sugar, extracts, eggs and butter until smooth. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture, half a cup at a time and mix thoroughly after each addition. Once all the dry ingredients are incorporated, mix in the M&Ms and flaked coconut. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheets. Bake in preheated oven for 8-10 minutes and then transfer onto cooling racks. Makes about 3 dozen cookies

Monday, February 6, 2012

Meatless Monday - Tomato Basil Soup with Ricotta Dumplings

Yum, yum, yum, yum, yum! I got this recipe out of my Pampered Chef vegetarian cookbook and it did not disappoint! This soup was loaded with flavor and really easy to make! It only makes two servings so next time, I'm definitely doubling it.

Tomato Basil Soup with Ricotta Dumplings

Soup Ingredients:
1 tsp. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 15 oz. can crushed tomatoes, undrained
1 1/2 c. vegetable broth
1/4 c. fresh basil leaves, chiffonade

Dumpling Ingredients:
1/4 c. part skim ricotta cheese
2 tbsp. grated parmesan cheese
1 egg white
Salt and pepper to taste
1/3 c. all purpose flour

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan and add the garlic. Saute for 1-2 minutes, until very fragrant and lightly browned. Immediately add tomatoes, broth and basil. Stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 8-10 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine all the dumpling ingredients and shape into 8-10 small round balls. After soup has simmered, return to a boil and add prepared dumplings. Boil until dumplings float to the surface, about 3-5 minutes. Ladle soup into two bowls and top with additional basil and cheese if desired.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Pan-fried Pork Tenderloin with Spicy Mustard Sauce

Here is yet another tasty dish from Kalyn's Kitchen. I'm becoming a fan of cooking with tenderloin! Especially if I can find it on sale ;) It's moist, flavorful, fairly lean, versatile and really easy to work with. This recipe was absolutely delicious! I love spicy mustard so I figured this was gonna be good. And it was!

Pan-fried Pork Tenderloin with Spicy Mustard Sauce

2 lb. pork tenderloin, trimmed of any visible fat
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. fat free chicken broth (you could also use water)
1/3 c. spicy brown mustard
3 tbsp. dijon mustard
3 tbsp. low fat sour cream

In a large skillet,  heat the oil over medium heat. Season pork with salt and pepper and place it in the hot skillet. Cook, turning occasionally until the meat is golden brown on all sides, about 8-10 minutes. Once the meat is browned, turn the heat to low and cover. Cook covered for 20-25 minutes, until cooked through.
Remove the pork from the pan, allow to rest and cover it tightly with foil to keep warm.  Leave any drippings in the pan and turn heat back to medium. Whisk in the chicken broth, scrapping the bottom and sides of the pan. Bring to a bubble and whisk in the mustards and sour cream. Cook and stir until heated through.
Once you've allowed the meat to rest for 10 minutes, slice into 3/4 inch slices and spoon the mustard sauce over the top. Makes 4-6 servings.