Belgium Waffles

Grandma (my mom) sent my son something special just for him but the whole family benefits from this gift too! My son enjoys cooking just like I do so this gift is a natural fit of course. The gift is a Belgium Waffle maker! This is a nice one too! It cooks them perfectly, easy to clean, cooks two at a time, and of course “cool looking” according to my son. I have to agree. I have not used it myself but I am sure it is easy to use as well. This is also a great gift because it gives my son and I more time together and something we can share in common. What a great grandma we have!

Of course we HAD to use it the very day it was delivered via UPS. But as luck would have it UPS was running about a hour or so later then normal. My son did not know it was on the way so I had to stall dinner. Little did I know that Belgium Waffles take more then a hour to prepare. So we went with standard waffles that night. But now that it’s a few days later we can make true Belgium Waffles,  the recipe and experience follows.

The Maker

The Maker

Feed Me!

Feed Me!

Can I eat now?

Can I eat now?

This recipe is a modified version from the manual. For those of you that are interested in the unit model it’s Warining Pro WWM1200SA (this is a really nice one!)

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 packet (2 1/3 teaspoons) Active Dry Yeast
  • 3 cups of All Purpose Flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 3 Lagre Eggs – seperated Plus 1 Egg White
  • 1/3 cup Sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups Skim Milk
  • 8 tablespoons Unsalted Butter – melted and cooled
  • 2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract

The long time to eat steps (1 hour is a long time when you are hungry) – This takes 1 hour after you blend all the ingredients!

  1. Heat half of the water to lukewarm (105-110 F) and add to a large bowl then add yeast and a pinch of sugar to dissolve. This will foam when done about 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Add flour and salt to a large bowl then stir to blend then set aside
  3. To the dissolved yeast bowl add egg yokes, one egg white and the remaining sugar stir to blend
  4. Add the reaming water, milk, melted cooled butter, oil and vanilla extract  stir until smooth
  5. Add the liquid mix to the dry mix and beat until smooth
  6. In your mixer bowl add the egg whites and beat until stiff speaks are formed (see picture below)
  7. Fold egg whites into batter
  8. Let the batter stand for 1 hour coming back every 15 minutes to stir. During this time the batter will be rising and smells so good!
  9. Heat the waffle maker, when heated pour batter into maker making sure to distribute batter evenly and push down into grids. This is yeast based so you will have bubbles.
  10. Cook per manufactures directions
  11. Top with your favorite topping (see my post here for an idea) and enjoy. You will!
Stiff Peaks from beating the egg whites

Stiff Peaks from beating the egg whites

Fold in the egg whites

Fold in the egg whites

Stir every 15 minutes for 1 hour

Stir every 15 minutes for 1 hour

The batter will rise over the hour. Oh waiting for the waffle iron to heat up!

The batter will rise over the hour. Oh waiting for the waffle iron to heat up!

Add some batter with the provided measuring cup

Add some batter with the provided measuring cup

be sure to spread evenly and get the batter into the grids.

Be sure to spread evenly and get the batter into the grids.

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Pasta, Egg, Ham and Cheese Bake

Time to eat!

Time to eat!

Pasta, eggs, ham and cheese who knew it could be so good and easy to make. You can also add some additional toppings such as salsa, hot sauce, veggies, or whatever floats your boat.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound Lumaconi pasta – my favorite
  • 1 pound ham steak – chopped
  • 8 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 8 oz shredded cheese reserving some for the topping – perhaps chedder thats what I used

The steps to goodness

  1. Cook pasta per package directions
  2. Preheat of to 450 F
  3. Break eggs into large pan and scrambled eggs making sure you cook with the butter
  4. In a casserole dish (greased) add pasta, ham, and egg and blend well. Don’t break up the egg to much the egg pieces should be in small bite size pieces
  5. Add cheese to the blend and mix well
  6. Flatten out blend and top with cheese
  7. Cook in oven for about 10 minutes or until cheese topping is a lite gold color
  8. When serving be sure to include topping on each plate. You can add some additional topping such a salsa or hot sauce.

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Before the bake

Before the bake

Hows this view before the bake?

Hows this view before the bake?

All warm and ready to eat!

All warm and ready to serve!

Coffee Cake Muffins with Strawberry Surprise

Yum!

Yum!

I needed to use up the strawberries in the Frig before they went bad. What to make with strawberries? Coffee cake muffins of course!

These are a bit dense with strawberries just under the topping and there is a bit of topping through the center of the muffin forced in with the handle end of a wooden spoon to give that extra surprise in taste. Test taste results was thumbs up around the room and mouths where full enjoying the tasty muffins.

Ingredients for the Muffin Bottom

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 1/2 cups sliced strawberries or just enough to top all of your muffins

Ingredients for the Muffin Top

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup light brownsugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened I put mine in the microwave for 10 seconds
  • 1/4 cup flaked sweated coconut (optional)

Mix, cook it , eat it

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Grease a muffin pan – makes 12
  3. Beat with electric mixer 1/4 cup butter in a bowl until creamy
  4. Add 3/4 cup sugar and egg to the mix and yes mix well
  5. Add flour, baking powder, and salt together in a separate bowl and mix.
  6. Stir the flour mixture and milk into butter sugar mixture and mix until combined
  7. Using a spoon fill muffin tins
  8. Arrange strawberries on top the batter (see picture below)
  9. Now for the sugar topping
  10. Mix flour, sugar and butter together in a bowl. You may need two butter knives to cut the butter into the mix
  11. Sprinkle topping over strawberries
  12. Use the handle end of a wooden spoon to push a single push of topping into the batter to give that extra surprise (see picture below)
  13. Top with coconut – optional
  14. Bake until a toothpick inserted off  the center of the muffin comes out clean, about 35 minutes
Strawberry topping

Strawberry topping

The wooden spoon step

The wooden spoon step

Before the heat

Before the heat

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Heated and cooling for a bit.

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That’s some detail

Enough already just eat me!

Enough already just eat me!

Chocolate Cake With Strawberries On Top

Happy Birthday Erik!

Happy Birthday Erik!

I wanted to make a cake for my son’s birthday using what I had on-hand. The cake had to be chocolate flavor and of course had to be good. I have not made many cakes in the past and wanted something different then I have made before. So off to the internet search I went. What to enter, I did have Hershey’s Cocoa on hand so lets go with that. First thing to popup was “Really Chocolate Chocolate Cake” from the Hershey’s Kitchens. This has to be good, so I called my son in to see the picture and recipe  and asked if he would like this. He said “YEEEEEESSSS!!!!!”. That was easy! I followed the recipe pretty close only reducing the powdered sugar by a half a cup to 3 1/2  for the frosting, adding the sliced strawberries as a topping  and love to the recipe.

The test taste results:

Great!

Yum!

mmm amma mmmeuumm (I think they said, this tastes great or something like that)

This beats store bought

Leftovers are better then the day before

Ingredients for Cake

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup Hershey’s Cocoa
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • Chocolate Fudge Frosting (see below for the recipe)
  • A handful of sliced or whole strawberries – be creative!

Make the cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans. Don’t leave any loose flour in pan
  3. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt in large bowl
  4. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla then beat starting on a low speed (otherwise you will make a mess) increasing to medium speed of electric mixer for 2 minutes
  5. Stir in boiling water
  6. Pour batter into greased and floured pans
  7. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out almost clean
  8. Cool cakes in pans for 10 minutes
  9. Remove cakes from pans to wire racks and cool completely (do not sneak a bite I will know about it!)
  10. Frost with Chocolate Fudge Frosting – see below. Adding frosting to the first cake then top with the second cake and add frosting to the stack
  11. Top with strawberries
  12. Store in cool place as the frosting is mostly butter after all
  13. Sing “Happy Birthday” (the traditional song as I think the copyright was removed)

Ingredients for Chocolate Fudge Frosting

  • 3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) butter, melted
  • 1 cup Hershey’s Cocoa
  • 3-1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Make the frosting

  1. Place melted butter in large mixer bowl
  2. Add cocoa and stir until smooth
  3. Gradually (I mean this!) beat in powdered sugar, milk and vanilla
  4. Beat until smooth
The dark cake and white does not work well with a smart phone camera.

The dark cake and white plate does not work well with a smart phone camera.

Ditto from above capitation.

Ditto from above capitation.

Avocado with Fried Egg

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Avocado with fried egg is a great combination on a sandwich and this is the first time I have ever tried this.  This is a simple meal and a very satisfying! I will be making this again.

Ingredients

  • Fresh buns – sliced – I used large homemade buns
  • Provolone cheese
  • Deli Ham – sliced thin
  • 1 tablespoon of Butter
  • Egg
  • Avocado – sliced
  • Tomato – sliced if desired
  • Hot Sauce – if desired
  • Fresh ground pepper

Build it

  1. Warm the ham in a pan for about 10 seconds each side
  2. Add butter to pan wait for it to melt then add the egg. While the egg is cooking spoon the melted butter from the pan on top of the egg until done
  3. Add buns to same pan to toast and warm slightly
  4. To build the sandwich put bottom half of bun on plate followed by the cheese, ham, egg, sliced avocado, pepper. Optionally you can add the tomato and or hot sauce.
  5. Slice if to big then eat!

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Dipped Strawberries

Just try and eat just one.

Just try and eat just one.

I was not going to post these dipped strawberries but my family went crazy over these after taking just one bite. Yes I will be making these again after that kind of response!

Ingredients

  • Fresh clean Strawberries – you pick the amount you want to make
  • 12 oz – Milk Chocolate Morsels – you will have leftovers so go ahead and make candy bars
  • 2 tablespoons Vegetable Shorting
  • a few table spoons of shredded Sweetened Coconut
  • a few table spoons of Confectioners Sugar

Building – Dipping be creative

  1. In a microwave safe dish add morsels and vegetable shorting. Heating in microwave for 30 seconds then stir. Heat for 10 seconds then stir. Repeat until smooth
  2. Holding the strawberry by the stem dip the tip of strawberry into chocolate
  3. Be creative and dip the chocolate covered strawberry into either the coconut and or confectioners sugar or nothing at all. Repeat this until you have a verity of covered strawberries
  4. Chill in refrigerator for about an hour before serving
Chilled and ready to eat!

Chilled and ready to eat!

Enchilada Lasagna Beef and Veggies

So Good!

So Good!

An enchilada that is not an enchilada but a cross between an enchilada and lasagna, yes its possible and better yet very tasty.

I wanted to get out of my recent repeat meal cycle and as a result I came up with this meal. Yes the meat and veggie part of the meal is similar to a recipe I came up with before but does not taste the same when combined like this.

Oh and this tastes great leftover the next day!

Ingredients 

  • 1 can of Las Palmas Enchilada Sauce
  • 8 Corn Tortillas (or however many fit your baking dish)
  • 1 cup – Cooked White Rice
  • 1 pound of Lean Ground Beef
  • 1 Green Bell Pepper – chopped
  • 1 Yellow onion – chopped
  • 2 Garlic cloves – diced
  • dash of Salt
  • 1 can of Black beans – drained
  • 2 bricks of Cheddar Cheese – shredded
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil

Cook it, build it, Cook it , Eat it 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F
  2. Add vegetable oil and let heat then add green pepper then onion to medium high heated skillet and cook for about 3 minutes or until they just start to turn brown
  3. Add ground beef to skillet brown and crumble
  4. Add Black beans, garlic and dash of salt and mix well
  5. Heat Las Palmas Enchilada Sauce in microwave for about a minute. Put this in a container with a large opening as you will be dipping the corn tortillas into the container
  6. Spray baking dish with cooking spray
  7. Now do the building and cook it:
  8. Dip 2 tortillas into the Enchilada Sauce and place the tortillas on the bottom of the baking dish
  9. Add a portion of the meat veggie mixture in an even layer then top with cheese then two more dipped tortillas
  10. Add a layer of white rice then cheese and yes two more dipped tortillas
  11. Once again add a portion of the meat veggie mixture in an even layer then top with cheese then two more dipped tortillas
  12.  Pour sauce into baking dish carefully covering your stack of goodness
  13. Top with cheese
  14. Cover the baking dish in aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes
  15. Remove foil and broil until cheese is bubbly and a golden brown
  16. Let cool in baking dish for a few minutes before cutting and serving
This is the sauce I used. It does say mild on the can but I would say this is medium.

This is the sauce I used. It does say mild on the can but I would say this is medium.

The very first layer

The very first layer

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We have a layer of tortillas, meat and veggie mix, cheese, tortillas, rice, cheese, tortilla, meat and veggie mix, and cheese

Ready for the oven

I added another layer of tortillas, the sauce and cheese. Now it’s ready for the oven!

Cooling and waiting to be cut and served

Cooling and waiting to be cut and served

Waffles, Fruit and Whipped Cream Oh My

Yes it tastes as good as it looks

Yes it tastes as good as it looks

Waffles, Fruit and Whipped Cream oh my. Yes these are good! I asked my family once everybody was done if I should have changed anything and they all said “NO!” So yes these are very good.

I am going for a bit healthier version here by doing small things such as using Truvia Baking Blend and using skim milk. You cannot not tell.

Because you are making the fruit blend syrup,  whipped cream and waffles for this meal I recommend you first make the whipped cream followed by the syrup fruit blend and finally the waffles.

Ingredients for the Whipped Cream

  • 1 Cup of Heavy Whipping  Cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of Truvia Baking Blend

Whipped Cream whipping steps – I am using a KitchenAid stand mixer

  1. Place mixing bowl and whisk attachment in freezer for 15 minutes
  2. Remove mixing bowl and whisk from freezer and attach to mixer as normal. if your hands are wet and the bowl is metal guess what? You will stick to the metal bowl!
  3. Add Heavy Whipping  Cream and Truvia to mixing bowl
  4. Start the mixer on low speed increasing to speed 8 slowly and mix for a few minutes. You are looking for stiff peeks when you lift up the whisk. Watch and test often.
  5. Put the end result into the refrigerator until you are ready to top the waffles

Ingredients for the Fruit Syrup

  • 1 1/2 Cups Strawberries removing the tops and only cut the larger berries
  • 1 Cup Blue Berries
  • 1 tablespoon of Orange Juice
  • Dash of salt
  • 4 tablespoons of Truvia Baking Blend

Fruit Syrup steps

  1. Place all ingredients in a small sauce pan and mix
  2. Heat until just stating to bubble then continue to heat for about two minutes longer
  3. Turn off heat and let cool

Ingredients for the Waffles 

  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon Baking Powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Truvia Baking Blend
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 stick butter  melted – I melted it in the microwave for 30 seconds
  • 1 1/2 cups of skim milk

Mix the batter, cook the batter and finally build it

  1. Preheat your Waffle Iron
  2. Preheat oven to 250 F – this is where you will store the Waffles until they are all done
  3. Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl
  4. In a separate bowl beat eggs then mix in milk and melted butter
  5. Add the wet bowl contents to the dry ingredients and mix well. Yes those small pesky lumps are okay.
  6. Pour the batter into your preheated Waffle Iron and cook per manufactures directions. Mine was about 6 1/2 minutes.
  7. Keep waffles warm in oven
  8. Once all the waffles are done it’s time to plate!
  9. Build a plate by placing two waffles on the plate followed by a couple dollops of whipping cream then add the fruit syrup
  10.  Try to eat slowly if you can.
Eat slooooowly

Eat slooooowly

Rogan Josh – the fast and easy way

Sometimes you just find a step saver product that makes things easy and tastes great too. I found that for a Rogan Josh dish and that great product is shown in the picture below with chicken breast cut into bite size pieces.

To prepare the meal you cut 1 pound of chicken breasts into bite size pieces, brown the chicken, simmer the chicken in the sauce for 15 minutes. Not much too it. Of course you should serve this on a bed of white rice (not that minute kind).

To step things up a bit I did brown the chicken in a cast iron skillet with olive oil not that I would do it any different.

Cut the chicken, brown the chicken, simmer the chicken in the sauce.

Cut the chicken, brown the chicken, simmer the chicken in the sauce.

Simmer time

Simmer time

Time to eat!

Time to eat!

Dark Chocolate Cake Recipe

How do I look from this side?

How do I look from this side?

I was looking for a good cake recipe and my friend came to the rescue with this dark chocolate cake recipe. I made this last year for Mothers day and again this year because it was such a huge hit.

Please don’t eat this all in one sitting! Yes it’s that good! You can freeze leftovers if needed.

Also this goes great with vanilla ice cream and coffee.

Note to guys: You must make this for your wife! 

Dark Chocolate Cake Recipe Ingredients

  • 1 Pkge – Duncan Hines Devils food cake mix
  • 1 Pkge small – Chocolate instant pudding
  • 1/2 Cup – Warm water
  • 1/2 Cup – ccoking oil  i.e. Crisco
  • 4 large  – Eggs
  • 1 Cup – Sour cream
  • 1 small bag – Dark Chocolate chips
  • For dusting  – Confectioners sugar

Mix it all about

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F
  2. In a large bowl combine all ingredients except chocolate chips and confectioners sugar
  3. Beat 4 minutes on medium speed
  4. Fold in chocolate chips
  5. Bake in a greased & floured Bundt pan at 350 for 50 to 60 minutes or until done
  6. Cool in pan for 15 minutes
  7. Turn out on wire rack and cool completely
  8. Sprinkle with confectioners sugar – I used a fine meshed strainer taping with my hand

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