Saturday, September 15, 2012

Slow-cooked Steak Bacon Rollups

FOUND IT: This is an old family recipe, typically made with venison.

A few months ago, I emailed my mom asking for a recipe we made all the time when I was younger. Here it is.

  • Roughly two pounds of something like round or chuck steak
  • 1 lb bacon, give or take
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup beef stock (I think I used chicken)
  • One large onion, sliced
  • Fresh garlic, minced
Cut the steak into roughly 2" wide strips and pound to tenderize. Place a strip of bacon over each strip of steak and roll the long way, securing with a toothpick. Brown the steaks in a skillet with the butter, then add the beef stock, onion and garlic to the skillet and bake at 300 for three hours.

Lemon Cherry Cheesecake

FOUND IT: A google search led me to a website called "Fleur de Sel."

We made this recipe for my mother in law's birthday. I had been saving it to make again once we had fresh cherries, but this year there wasn't much of a cherry season. I'll save it for next year, I guess.


  • Nine graham crackers
  • 1 cup toasted almonds
  • 4 1/2 tbsp melted butter
  • 2 8 oz packages of cream cheese, softened
  • 3 ounces of white chocolate, melted
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • juice and zest of one lemon
  • 8 ounces sour cream
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups cherries, pitted
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup sugar
Combine the graham crackers and almonds in a food processor, then add the butter. Line an eight inch springform pan with this mixture, including the sides. Bake it at 325 until golden, about ten minutes.

In another bowl, combine the cream cheese, 2/3 cup sugar, vanilla, eggs, lemon zest and lemon juice. Once they're combined, add the melted chocolate. Pour this mixture into the crust and bake at 325 for 40-45 minutes, until " the edges are set but the middle still jiggles when you give it a shove."

For the sour cream topping combine the sour cream, 3 tbsp sugar and vanilla and allow to rest at room temperature until the cheesecake has baked.

Combine the cherries and 1/3 cup sugar and wait for a few minutes, then add the cornstarch and cook over medium heat for about five minutes or until the juices start to thicken.

When the cheesecake comes out of the oven let it rest for 5-10 minutes, then spread the sour cream mixture on top. Return it to the oven and bake for five more minutes. Once it's cooled again, spread the cherry mixture on top. Allow to cool overnight.

Lemon Squares

FOUND IT: In the August 2012 issue of Cooking Light

The same night we made the BBQ chicken sandwiches, we served these lemon squares as a light, somewhat summery dessert. Our guests had also brought dessert but pretty quickly set theirs aside and had seconds of these.


  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tbsp pine nuts
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • Cooking spray
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp grated lemon rind
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar
Toast the pine nuts by placing them in a 9x9 pan in a single layer and baking them at 350 for five minutes or so.

Place the toasted pine nuts, the 1/4 cup of powdered sugar, the 3/4 cup flour and salt in a food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Add the butter and oil and process until the mixture "resembles coarse meal."

Coat your 9x9 dish from before in cooking spray and press the processed mixture into it. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until lightly browned.

Combine the 3/4 cup sugar, 2 tbsp flour, lemon rind, lemon juice, eggs and egg white in a medium bowl and whisk until smooth. Pour this mixture over the crust and bake at 325 for 20 minutes or until set. Cool completely in the pan on a wire rack, then cover and chill them for two hours. Sprinkle evenly with the remaining powdered sugar before serving.

Peach French Toast Bake

FOUND IT: In a July issue of USA Weekend

I'm sorry I didn't share this earlier, as we've made it multiple times during peach season.


  • cooking spray
  • About half a loaf of a hearty bread, cut into large cubes
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 5 cups sliced peaches
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon (or more)
  • 1 1/2 cups light yogurt (plain or vanilla)
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
Coat a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray, then spread the cubes of bread out in the pan. 

Whisk together the eggs, egg whites, milk and vanilla, then pour that mixture over the bread. Scatter the peach slices evenly over the bread and eggs, and sprinkle them with the brown sugar and cinnamon. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

Bake for 40 minutes at 350, and serve topped with the yogurt and maple syrup.

Layered Pizza Dip

FOUND IT: This recipe was in the Appleton Post Crescent, and is also similar to one my aunt shared with me at one point.

This is a great, flexible party dip - feel free to change the ingredients to include your favorite pizza toppings, make it vegetarian, or whatever works for you.

I also saved some of the leftovers from this and had it on top of a sliced, grilled zucchini the next day.


  • One 8 oz package of light cream cheese, softened.
  • 1/2 tbsp (or more to taste) dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup pizza sauce (I use one of these pouches, which is about perfect)
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 cup pepperoni, diced (I got this from the deli but the slices were too thin and kind of melted away.)
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheese (I used all mozzarella, but it's flexible)
Spread the softened cream cheese on the bottom of a nine inch pie plate, and sprinkle the oregano over that. Spread the pizza sauce over the cream cheese, then sprinkle the chopped bell pepper and pepperoni over that. Top with the cheese, and bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes. Serve with crackers.

Barbecue Chicken Sandwiches

FOUND IT: In the May 2012 issue of Cooking Light

I usually don't like to make a new recipe for the first time when we have company coming over, but earlier this summer Laura convinced me to try this one and I'm glad I did.

Laura and I have a difference of opinion on one of the methods here, though: I went with more chicken than the recipe called for, which created a dish with a barbecue flavor but relatively limited sauce, then served it with extra BBQ sauce on the side so everyone could determine what level of sauce they wanted individually. If you want a better sauce-to-meat ratio, though, then stick with the proportions below.

You can also, of course, make your own coleslaw. I misunderstood the initial ingredient list, though, and bought some premade from the deli counter. I think that worked fine.

I also used the leftover chicken to make a barbecue chicken pizza the next day, and that may actually have been more popular.


  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 tbsp honey mustard
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 3/4 tsp chili powder
  • 3/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • a dash of salt
  • 3 cups shredded boneless, skinless rotisserie chicken (a full chicken makes about 4 cups)
  • 3 cups premade coleslaw (I cheated here accidentally).
  • 1/3 cup chopped green onions
  • 6-8 hamburger buns
Combine the ketchup, mustard, water, chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, Worcestershire sauce and salt in a saucepan (I used a deep skillet, which I think turned out to be easier). Bring the sauce mixture to a simmer and cook for ten minutes. Combine the sauce and the chicken, stirring to coat.

Place about half a cup of the chicken mixture on a bun, top with the coleslaw and green onions, and serve.

Chicken And Wild Rice Soup

FOUND IT: Nowhere in particular. I followed the instructions on the box of wild rice, but eyeballed the rest.

I tend to eyeball soups, so some of my measurements here are imprecise. I think they're pretty close, though.

  • 1 cup uncooked wild rice
  • 3 cups water (probably could use chicken stock here)
  •  1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Half of a red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 or 1 1/2 cups shredded zucchini
  • Four large carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp minced garlic
  • 3 cups shredded, cooked chicken (for me this was frozen leftovers from two rotisserie chickens)
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tsp each cayenne pepper, dried thyme, sage and rosemary (I would've used parsley too, but I was out)
  • 2 cups skim milk (or whatever milk you have on hand)

Bring the water, salt and butter to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the rice, reduce heat and simmer for 55 minutes.

While the rice is cooking, saute the red ball pepper, zucchini, carrots, celery and onion with the olive oil in a large soup pot. When they're almost translucent, add the garlic. Cook the garlic for a few minutes with the vegetables, then add the chicken, stock, cayenne pepper, thyme, sage and rosemary. Stir to combine, then allow to cook over medium-low heat until the rice is done.

Drain the excess water off the rice after 55 minutes (there will be a fair amount of excess water, don't worry about it), and add the rice to the soup along with the milk. Continue to simmer for about 10 minutes or so, then serve with oyster crackers, a crusty bread and butter.