Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Cheesy Tuna and Rice Muffinlettes

Last week I was flipping through our family cookbook trying to find something new and delicious to cook this week. When I search through the family cookbook it is a secret, to everyone but my husband...and now all of you, that I search for recipes made by my dear Aunt Judy. Judy is an exceptional cook. She has a plethora of recipes and they are all, and I mean every single one of them, delicious. My husband loves everything she makes so when I stumbled upon this recipe and realized that I had every single thing necessary to make it stockpiled (P.S., I'm a couponer), I decided to try it out.

I was a little worried about the tuna in the recipe. Don't get me wrong, I love tuna. But sometime recipes that have tuna in them tend to be a little too "fishy" for my taste. Then everything smells like tuna, and many people know I do NOT like to smell my dinner after I'm done eating. It makes me nauseous. So, I was a little skeptical about the tuna. But the tuna was GREAT! It didn't add a tuna flavor just more of a meaty texture. I think you could probably exchange out shredded chicken in place of tuna, but it might get a little dry when you bake these. Really, the tuna was exceptional.

I loved these! DELICIOUS! The spices in them were perfect, and the rice was such a great little addition. It was like a meal, right there in one little cup. And you know what else? It's a little cheap meal! Leftover rice? Got it. Cheese? Got it. Tuna? Got it. Spices? Got it. I HIGHLY recommend these. I might be munching on the leftovers for lunch today.

Oh, and Little E, my 21 month old...LOVED THEM! Kid friendly!

Cheesy Tuna and Rice Muffinlettes

2 c. cooked rice
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 small can tuna, drained and flaked
3/4 c. olives, sliced (optional, I didn't have any last night so I didn't add them but I think it would be great!)
1 T. dried onion
1 T. parsley flakes
1 t. seasoned salt
2 eggs, beaten
2 T. milk

Mix beated eggs and milk; stir in rest of ingredients and mix together thoroughly. Spray muffin pans with non-stick spray. Divide mixture among cups. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes. Serve with lemon juice. (I didn't have any lemon juice, so I didn't do this, but I think it would be great!)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Strawberry Sauce

Little R is a strange eater. One day she loves something, the next day she won't go near it. One of those foods she is most fickle with is strawberries. One day she will eat two or three whole ones the next day she won't even touch them.

And so came the dilemma of having a huge pound of strawberries that were not getting eaten. I was really worried they were going to go bad so I started scouring every cookbook I owned attempting to find a recipe I could throw them in. I found a great one in the Our Best Bites cookbook, which is based off the Our Best Bites website.

My dear sister, Jackie, bought me this cookbook earlier this year as a "Welcome to Utah!" gift when I came to visit her. I was so excited when I went upstairs and saw it sitting on my bed. I have followed the Our Best Bites website for a long time and I love all of their recipes. This is one of the greatest cookbooks I own. This cookbook, the Pioneer Woman cookbook, and our family's cookbook is the most used cookbooks in my tiny, but not so tiny, collection of cookbooks. I recommend this cookbook to EVERYONE. It will be one of the greatest investments you make in your kitchen. The recipes are so simple and easy, but delicious! I have made so many things in it and everyone of them has turned out PERFECT. I HIGHLY recommend everyone going out and getting this book. (P.S. I'm not getting paid for saying that!)

So, Our Best Bites had a great recipe for Strawberry Sauce that looked perfect. I decided to pair it with Double Chocolate Waffles from the same cookbook, a recipe Jackie will be posting later. They write in the cookbook that this sauce is great drizzled over ice cream, waffles, pancakes, cheesecake or blended with ice cream to make milkshakes. I love this sauce. It is lick-the-spoon delicious.

Strawberry Sauce
From: Our Best Bites

1 Pint strawberries, washed, hulled and roughly chopped
1/3 c. granulated sugar
1 t. almond or vanilla extract

Combine strawberries, sugar, and vanilla in medium saucepan and bring to a simmer of over medium heat. Cook for five minutes. The cookbook says to stir constantly and break the strawberries up but I really didn't do that. I stirred occasionally and just tried to push on the strawberries. After five minutes, remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly before pouring into a blender or food processor. Pulse until the consistency you want is reached.

Sauce can be refrigerated for one month and frozen for up to three months.

I put it on Little R's waffles this morning...P.S. she didn't touch them. I'm so shocked.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Oatmeal Blueberry Muffins

My sister has informed me that it has been nine months since my last post... I could have birthed a baby since my last post. Unfortunately, I did not but I'm going to try really hard to get more up.

Today I have DELICIOUS blueberry muffins! I found the recipe in the July/August 2011 issue of Cooking with Paula. There is a whole section in the magazine that use blueberries and this is only the first of many that I plan on making!

I love blueberry muffins. Especially when they have a crumble top but when I saw the recipe for these I got really excited, even if they lacked the crumble top. What really got me excited was the orange zest in it. I love how blueberries and citrus taste together.

What REALLY made these muffins incredible was the oatmeal. I'm not an "oatmeal-in-my-baked-goods" kinda girl. I don't care for oatmeal in my cookies or muffins so I was a little skeptical. But this recipe has you soak one cup of oatmeal in one cup of 2% milk for ten minutes which I think was the best thing that I could have ever done. The muffins were so moist and I really attribute it to the oatmeal soak.

I hope you enjoy these more than my husband. This was our exchange:

Husband: (takes bite) Hmm..
Me: Yes?
Husband: Does this have orange in it?
Me: Just some orange zest, only a tablespoon.
Husband: Hmm..
Me: like it?
Husband: They don't taste like how I would expect them to taste.
Me: What did you expect?
Husband: Costco blueberry muffins.
Me: Dear, those aren't muffins. They are little blueberry cakes.

So, to wrap up...if you only like your muffins to taste like the giant muffins/little cakes at Costco, you won't like these. But I LOVE THEM!

Oatmeal Blueberry Muffins
From: Cooking with Paula July/August 2011

1 c. old-fashioned oatmeal (I used quick oats and it was fine)
1 c. 2% reduced-fat milk (I actually used whole since I have it for the baby who won't drink it)
1/2 c. firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 c. vegetable oil
1 T. orange zest
1 egg
1 c. AP flour
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. baking soda
1/4 t. cinnamon (who measures cinnamon? i sure don't.)
1/2 c. chopped pecans (DELICIOUS! They add an incredible crunch!)
1 1/2 c. frozen blueberries (I think you could easily use fresh or thawed blueberries, but I would recommend tossing them in flour before adding them to the mix so they don't bleed too much in your batter)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.

In a large bowl, stir together oats and milk, let stand for 10 minutes. Add sugar, oil, orange zest, and egg, and stir well.

In a medium bowl, stir together flour, powder, soda and cinnamon. Add pecans, tossing well. Add flour mixture into oatmeal mixture, stirring just until combined. Gently, but quickly, fold in ONLY 1 cup of the blueberries.

Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle tops with remaining 1/2 c. blueberries.

Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.