Friday, April 23, 2010

Meatloaf and Broccoli with creamy cheese sauce

Wow, it's been a little while since I posted something to cook! So, I dusted of my camera, charged up some batteries, removed the 100000000 dog pictures from my memory card... and I hopped to it in the kitchen! Full meal tonight guys - hopefully complete with the best sheet cake ever that I posted about last week = chocolate decadence at its finest (and easiest)!

So, here we go!
Magimoms Meatloaf

What you need: 
Ground beef - 3 - 5 lbs (depending on your crew)
Garlic - 3 cloves
Bread crumbs
3 eggs
Worcestershire sauce
Dijon Mustard (I use Grey Poupon cause it makes me feel all rich and stuff)
Salt and Pepper 

Preheat oven to 325.

Crumble ground beef into a large bowl (make sure its big enough for everything, plus your hands). Mince garlic - either in your food processor or by hand. 

Add garlic to ground beef.Add everything else - yep, dump it all in there!

Using your hands - yes, I said your hands (preferably freshly washed hands) to knead mixture together until ground beef holds together well when compressed:

Shape into loaves and place in 8x12 or 9x13 baking dish. 
Coat loaves with a layer of ketchup:

Place loaves in preheated oven for about an hour. 

When done, remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to settle, and the meatloaf holds together better

After cooling, remove to platter and slice

Broccoli and Creamy Cheese Sauce
What you need: 
Broccoli (about 1lb fresh or frozen) Steamed
I use frozen and put it in my steamer basket and cook until tender. 

3 tbsp butter
3 tbsp flour
salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 c milk
1 c shredded cheddar cheese. 
Melt butter over low heat. Remove from heat and add flour, salt and pepper stir until well blended and smooth.

Add milk and stir until smooth. 

Return to heat and heat milk to simmer stirring constantly to prevent scorching. Mixture will be thick and bubbly. Add cheese and stir until melted. 

Spoon over broccoli as desired. Can also (discovered at dinner) be used on potatoes, and I plan to use the leftovers over pasta for my lunch tomorrow! 
Served with "dirty mashed potatoes", this makes for a hearty meal!
From the kitchen of a mom, with lots of love! Magimom

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Hooboy... this ought to be good! Breadmaking 101

It has been a little while since I actually did anything 'step-by-step' on here, but tonight might be different. I'm doing a dinner that I've been wanting to share on here for a while, and if my camera will cooperate I just might get it done today... but also, I'm going to try my hand at some Lucky Four-Leaf Clover rolls from over at the Tasty Kitchen Blog. I love this place, it's full of reader submitted recipes and reviews of recipes! It is part of The Pioneer Woman site, which I've already admitted to being addicted to, and worth a look-see if you're fresh out of ideas for dinner, a party, or dessert - hell just about anything.

Tonight, I'm making a Cheesy Rotini Bake, made with... wait for it... hehe... you'll never guess?!?!... 

Rotini and Cheese! HA - you would never have figured it out... so yeah, anyway I use three types (or two, or four, just depends on what I have/want) of cheese usually - Monterey Jack, Cheddar, and Velveeta. I have also been known to toss in Mozarella, Ricotta, or plain American cheeses when I needed a little boost. It's a great dinner that kids love, and that's good around here because my kids are damned picky eaters and if i can find something they'll eat thirds of, I've made a winner. 
So, Cheesy Rotini Bake, and Lucky Four-Leaf Clover rolls, brushed with garlic and Italian butter.  We'll see how this works with the camera - otherwise, I'll just post the recipe later. 

From the kitchen of a mom, with lots of love!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Oh, holy crap Pioneer Woman!

So, I joined the ranks of Pioneer Woman cooks in the last year, I know I've talked about her before on my blog. Well, in the last two weeks, I've made two different desserts from her kitchen, and I can only say one thing... HOLY CRAP Pioneer Woman! It's a wonder Marlboro Man doesn't weigh 500 lbs! And how she keeps her girlish figure eating like this and this I don't know!!!

My girl and I made the Carrot Cake to take with us on our vacation. We wound up dividing it between us and bringing our half home, because the guests expected didn't arrive until after we left. But when we got home and DEVOURED our half - I can only say HOLY CRAP Pioneer Woman!!!! That was the sweetest, moistest (is that really a word???), most heavenly carrot cake I've ever eaten. I don't normally like carrot cake... but this one, this one I fell in love with. I even tinted the frosting with a bit of my Wilton frosting colors, in orange, for the holiday! The cake was simply to die for. 
Then yesterday... ahhhh yesterday, in a chocolate craving fit I started digging through PW's cookbook because I KNEW that I'd seen a cake in there I wanted to try... So last night I found all my ingredients, except buttermilk, which I was able to fix with a tip from PW; and I baked the Best. Chocolate. Sheetcake. EVER! Ok, I've said it before... I will say it again - HOLY CRAP Pioneer Woman! 
This cake is totally the best cake I've ever made. It filled me with pride as the family sunk their teeth into the chocolate decadence on their plates. It also filled me with a deep nostalgia... for this woman: 

Yes, the lady there in the glasses, holding a smiling mischievous baby? That my friends is my grandmother... She was a constant in my life from birth. My grandparents stoically followed my mother everywhere. I know now that it was more a case of my grandmother could not possibly live anywhere my mother wasn't... so she dragged my grandfather with her wherever we moved. It started out the other way around... in the early days of their marriage, and my mother's youth my grandfather was a Shrimp Boat Captain. In fact, I am named after his favorite Shrimp Boat, the Elizabeth Ann...  Yep, I'm named after a boat! Meh... anyway - my grandmother stayed home when mom was young.. then when mom and dad married, and daddy started shrimping with grandpa, we followed them. From Fort Myers, FL to Corpus Christi, Texas. Stopping for a while here and there in towns like Mobile, Alabama and Cameron , Louisiana. 
Grandma was there from day one, and if I wasn't with mom and dad, I was with her. She was such a wonderful soul, and she died an unfair and tragic death... and I miss her horribly. But I remember the food! 
Grandma made this very same cake when I was a kid... I don't know how PW got it perfect, but she did... and for that I say a hearty  THANK YOU Pioneer Woman - you awoke one of my fondest memories with this cake... It makes you truly understand the power of food in our lives! 

From the kitchen of a mom, with lots of love!