Saturday, February 26, 2011

It's Easy gettin' Cheesey

I love bread. Like, A LOT. I am the first one in the bread basket when it arrives at the table. Bread, butter.....a match made in heaven.
I get email updates from Kraft, Betty Crocker and Pillsbury and I click and look and will say "Hmm, that might be good" or "my family would bolt from the table if I ever served that". One day I got the email and it was a round Sourdough loaf that was cut, drizzled with butter, stuffed with cheese and then baked.
I'm really not a Sourdough fan. Please do not send the hate mail (like the ones I received when I admitted to not liking ice cream, strawberries or any pie other than pecan and chocolate). I know lots of people enjoy the taste of Sourdough, but not in this house. I kept looking for a round loaf I could use and finally found this in the bakery section of our local grocery store.
mmmmmm, bread

The recipe, if you can even call it that, is pretty much 3 ingredients-bread, butter and cheese. I, however, wanted to bump up the flavor, so I added a fourth element. Garlic powder. I mean, c'mon-who doesn't like garlic bread?

Cheesey Party Loaf
(adapted from on-line recipe**)

1 loaf round bread

1/2 stick butter, melted

1/2 tsp. garlic powder

1 cup shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Slice across the loaf in 1-inch increments, not cutting through the bottom of the bread. Turn the loaf 90 degrees and cut across the loaf again in 1-inch increments. The bread will have 1-inch 'fingers' now. Fan the bread a little to open it up. Stir the garlic powder into melted butter. Pour the melted butter down the rows of the cut bread, making sure to cover horizontal and vertical rows. Take pinchfuls of the shredded cheese and stuff down each row, again making sure to go across all rows, tucking the cheese down into the crevices.

Wrap the loaf in heavy duty tin foil, or a double layer of regular tin foil. Place wrapped loaf on your oven rack that is placed in the middle of the oven. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is all melty and gooey.

The second time I made this, I melted a little extra butter and just sprinkled a little more garlic powder in then brushed it over the top of the loaf.
It is so simple but oh so good. My family devoured it at our family Christmas a couple of weeks ago. You just break off a hunk and go. I also made it last weekend for our Girl's Night and brought the half loaf home and we re-warmed it to go with our leftover Prime Rib.
Your tummy-and your family-will thank you.

On to other business.
Twenty years ago at about 5:25 AM, we were blessed with our first daughter Ally. Happy Birthday Baby! I love you even more now than I did when they placed you in my arms all those years ago. I'm sad that I don't get to make you a special dinner or a cake, but I know you have fun plans tonight with your high school BFF and your sister who are driving up North as we speak. Be good, be careful, have fun!

** I checked all of my on-line recipe e-mail sites and can't find the original recipe, so I'm not sure who gets proper credit. UPDATE: it is from Taste of Home, just got an update and checked their site :)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Raise your hand if you are sick of winter...Or, how delish are these leftovers?

photo by Amanda Glaus from MN

This is what the weather looks like where I live right now, and this is good compared to what it was like down in the country where we live. It was Girls Night tonight, but got pushed to Girls Afternoon due to the impending weather. I get together with my friends C and M, whom I used to work with at the Bank. We get together not as often as we would like, but usually every other month or so. We all make food then sit and eat said food and talk about what is new in each of our lives. Today, our food was awesome like always! C made turkey meatballs with a glaze of Cocktail sauce and grape jelly and some mustard and her famous guac, M brought veggies and dip and a pan of chocolate chip cookie bars and I made popcorn salad and made a loaf of cheesy bread (which I will share this upcoming week). I also brought a bottle of Rose Regale for them to try-it was a 10 on everyones list.

My plate of food this afternoon

Last night Dude and I were going to have date night and decided to ask Drama Queen to come since we were going out for Prime Rib-and she hadn't had any for a long, long time. We went to Wiederholt's in Miesville, MN. It is an old fashioned supper club that has been owned by the same family for maybe 60 years. It is old school. Dark paneling, red curtains and carpeting, old fashioned chandeliers with the orange bulbs. They serve you a tray of crudities with dip and ice sprinkled over the veggies to keep cold, an assortment of crackers and fresh buns, a stick of REAL butter, salads and your main course. It is always busy on the weekends, so a nice man offered DQ and me his chairs and we all enjoyed a cocktail while we waited-DQ had a Shirley Temple only (she was our sober cab-I must say it is quite handy!) We all ordered the Prime Rib-Dude and I had the 24 ounce cut will Boo had the 16 ounce. We knew we would have enough to bring home and enjoy this evening. I made some baked potatoes, warmed the meat in au jus and reheated the remaining cheesy bread from this afternoon. It was delightful. Just enough for a small supper after watching an awesome Daytona 500. We are not big sports buffs in our house, but we love us some racing! We have a local track only 16 miles from our house, so we like to get to at least one race each year.

So, while the weather is awful (I don't even want to think about us having to drive in this crap-thankfully DQ is off due to the holiday) we had our fair share of wonderful food this weekend. Can't remember the last time we had a dinner bill of $114......darn Cosmos!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

And they didn't even bring a Hostess gift

Some freaking bug has entered my body and refuses to leave. I had to cancel my lunch date with my best friend from high school and feel the need to go back to bed again. So much for plans of cooking this weekend.

I do hope to have an appy to share with you, as I am having Girl's Night with my former co-workers tomorrow (if this personal attack on my immune system will allow me). It was so easy-saw it on Kraft or Pillsbury maybe? I made it last weekend for my family Christmas party---and forgot to take a picture, so am making it again for the girls for tomorrow, along with Meg's favorite Popcorn salad.

I'm off to drink hot water and honey, gargle with some salt water, and slowly chip away at the layers of skin on my nose.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Devils Food Heath Bar Cake

While perusing several of the blogs I follow, I found this over at Framed. I did change it up a bit as I'm not a big fan of Butterfingers. Plus, since Hermit Crab was home with her boyfriend, I totally missed a step and an ingredient, but I actually liked it better this way. The cake the original way was very good, but it totally fell apart. I like my cake a little more...toothy, or at least in one piece on the plate. It is VERY rich, so we cut it in 12 pieces; next time: 16.

Devils Food Heath Bar Cake

1 box Devils food cake mix
--ingredients called for on box
1 jar Hot caramel sauce (for ice cream)
1 container Cool Whip (or homemade-I didn't have the facility to whip the cream)
2 regular size Heath Bars (I had minis, so we crushed up about 12)

Bake cake according to directions on package for two 9-inch round pans. Let cool in pan for about 5 minutes. Flip out onto wire rack, then flip again onto a cookie sheet. Poke holes all over the top of the cake. I used a chop stick. Heat up the Hot caramel sauce in the jar in the microwave for about 40 seconds. Pour over the cake and let it seep into holes and pool on top. Let the cakes cool, then place one top of the other and let cool completely. Right before serving, top with Cool Whip (if you have limited options) or fresh whipped cream. Sprinkle with crushed Heath Bars.

You can check out Kathleen's site for original recipe from where she got the recipe. The original includes mixing the Hot caramel sauce with a can of sweetened condensed milk, then pouring it over the holey cake. It was terrific, but you need to not layer the cake or it will crumble, and it will crumble a little on the plate.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

A weekend full of food and lazing

My family celebrated Christmas yesterday. Yes, we are a little late, but there were circumstances that occured that were beyond our control. We were afraid that we were going to have to postpone again, as my Mom ended up having emergency surgery on Wednesday, but here she is below with my niece checking out said niece's new IPhone and all the cool technology that she doesn't understand.

The big surprise was that Hermit Crab and her boyfriend came home for the weekend and we didn't tell anyone so we could surprise the family. It sure was fun to watch every one's faces as they walked into my sister's house and saw them on the couch!

Today the morning is all about lazing around...mostly with a Tofu on my lap. I think I may go out and make some waffles for the kids and then nap until it is time for our dinner date with some long time friends. We have both heard excellent reviews about dinner, so I may need to bring the camera with!