Tuesday, December 30, 2008

White Chili

6 (16 oz) cans Greata Northern white beans- not drained

1 large onion, finely chopped

1/2 tsp garlic salt

1 (7 oz) can green chili with juice

1 lb white chicken, cooked and chopped

1 tsp cumin

3 tsp oregano

1 tsp chili powder

4 chicken bouillon cubes

16 oz sour cream

1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Cook and chop your chicken and put in a large pot

Open and add the beans- do not drain them

Add the diced green chili

I always use the Hatch brand

Add everything else to the pot

Stir and heat through

Or put it all in a crock pot and cook on medium for 2 hours.

Serve with rolls or corn bread.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Cherry Cheese Pie

This recipe makes 1- 9 inch pie. I usually double it and make 2 pies. It is my most requested pie.

9 inch unbaked pie shell
2 cans (1 lb 5 oz) cherry pie filling
12 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs

1/2 tsp vanilla extract ( I prefer mexican vanilla if I can find it- it is so much richer and flavorful than the imitation extract)

Preheat your oven to 425*F

Prepare pie shell

Spread 1 can of cherry filling in bottom of pie shell

Bake for 15 minutes
Remove from oven
Reduce heat to 350*F

While pie shell is baking,
Beat cream cheese, sugar, eggs and vanilla until smooth

This time I am going to use the paddle

Since I have a stand mixer, I let it beat almost the entire time the
shell is baking. This makes it really smooth and creamy.

This is what it will look like after the 15 minutes of baking
Don't forget to turn the heat down to 350* F

Spread the cream cheese mixture over the hot cherry filling
Clean up the spills on the door
Bake for 25 minutes
Make sure the temp is 350*F.
The filling will be soft when you take it out of the oven. It will set up as it cools
Cool completely on a wire rack
Just before serving, spread the remaining can of pie filling on top of pie.
If you are lucky enough to have leftovers, store it in the refridgerator.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Lemon Meringue Pie

This is a simple and quick Lemon Meringue pie. We are going to use Jello Brand Lemon Pie filling. I will show you how to make a lemon pie from scratch in another post, but since I am making this along with my other Thanksgiving pies, I want to do it quick and easy.

Start with a baked pie shell

1 4.3 oz pk Lemon Pie filling
Make sure it is the cook and serve- not istant
You are going to combine the mix with
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
3 egg yolks

There are lots of ways to seperate the yolks from the whites
This is one of them. You crack the egg into the seperator and let the whites drain off
Even though I have this tool, I don't use it very often
I do it the following way

Crack the egg and drop it into my hand

Let the white slip through my fingers

It slips rather quickly.
A lot quicker than through the tool.
Be sure not to break the yolk. You are going to use the whites for your meringue and they can't have any yolk in them.

After stirring the mix, sugar, water and egg yolks together
add 2 1/2 cups more of water

The secret to smooth pudding pies is this--
STIR CONSTANTLY until it comes to a full boil
This is what a full boil looks like. The mixture will go from cloudy to clear
then it will start bubbling. Wait for it to be bubbling all over, not just in a couple of spots.
Take it off of the heat and let it cool for 5 minutes then pour into pie crust.
Now we are going to make the meringue.
We need to beat the egg whites from above.
I like to use a copper bowl, because the egg whites beat up fluffier, but my hand mixer is broken
and my copper bowl doesn't fit on my KitchenAid

These are the attachments for mixing things
The whisk, bread hook, and paddle
I am going to use the whisk for meringue and whipped cream

Put the room tempurature egg whites in the bowl and beat them on high speed until foamy
Gradually add in 1/3 cup sugar and continue beating on high speed

You want to beat them until stiff peaks form.
It will look like this
See the little peak that formed when I lifted the whisk out?
Spread the meringue on your cooled lemon pie

You can leave it like that but I like to make cute little mountains on mine
Place your spatula (or a knife works as well) lightly on the meringue

And lift- making a peak

Make them all over your pie
Bake at 350*F for 15-20 minutes
or until your meringue is lightly browned.
Watch your pie the last 5 minutes because the meringue will burn quickly once it has browned.
Cool at room temperature at least 4 hours.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

2 Crust Pies

Start with your basic pie crust recipe- doubled

Roll half of the dough and line pan

Don't trim yet

Put your filling in the crust
I used a canned apple pie filling for this pie

Roll out the rest of the dough for the top crust
The top crust needs to be vented to allow steam to escape
I like to use this design because it is the one that my
Mother and Grandmother always used
I take a butter knife and make two curved slits
then use the tip of the knife to make the smaller slots

Fold the crust and place ontop of your filling
Carfully unfold
Trim excess dough

Crimp the two crusts together
I pinch the dough between my thumb and forefinger and twist
Then I sprinkle the top with a mixture of cinnamon and sugar

Bake as directed for your filling
Apple pies are usually 40-50 minutes in a 350*F oven

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Pumpkin Pie

3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 large eggs Italic
1 can (15 oz.) LIBBY'S® 100% Pure Pumpkin
1 can (12 fl. oz.) Evaporated Milk
1 unbaked 9-inch (4-cup volume) unbaked deep-dish pie shell or
2 shallow 9 inch unbaked pie shells
Whipped cream (optional)

MIX sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger and cloves in small bowl. Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk.

POUR a small amount into pie shell.

Using a butter knife, trim off the excess crust and crimp the edges if desired

BAKE in preheated 425° F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350° F; bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate. Top with whipped cream before serving.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Perfect Pie Crust

1 cup flour
1/2 cup shortening

Put in a mixing bowl and cut the shortening into the flour

I use a pastry blender, but you can use a butter knife. It doesn't matter, just so your shortening is cut into small pebble bits into the flour.

It should look something like this. You can cut even more if you want to, but this is ok.

Add 1/2 cup water

Stir with a fork just until it forms a ball and no flour is left in the bowl.
Don't stir too much or your crust will be hard and not light and flaky.

This is what it should look like. If it is too wet, then add a small amount of flour and stir.

Now it is time to roll the crust out. I use a mat. The ridges tell you how many inches in diameter your crust is. You can get a mat like this at any kitchen store. I got mine at Pampered Chef. If you don't have one, you can roll out your crust on your counter top, or waxed paper, or even in a 1 gallon ziploc bag.

Even with the mat, I still need to flour my surface and my rolling pin so the crust doesn't stick.
Put the ball of dough on the floured surface.

Roll out your pie crust

Roll in more than one direction to keep your crust round.
Add flour as needed, but use it sparingly

If you don't have a mat, then you can measure your crust by turning your pan upside down on the rolled out crust. Your crust should be 1-2 inches larger than the rim of your pan.

Fold your crust in half.

Then in half again.
Place it in your pie tin
Unfold. It should lap over the edges

If you are making a pudding type pie, where you fill the crust after it is baked, then poke your crust with a fork before baking. This prevents bubbles and shrinking while baking

Bake for 15-20 minutes at 350* F