Applelicious Cupcakes

Applelicious Cupcakes

Channeling June Cleaver

Channeling June Cleaver

Monday, April 25, 2016

Cinco de Mayo Turkey Stuffed Peppers

I love spicy food especially Mexican.  This recipe is easy to make and tastes so good! You can add as much heat as you want by just adding more Jalapeno peppers. I've added black beans to this recipe instead of rice for a change and I don"t know if I'll ever use rice again in this recipe, just love the beans!
2 large red peppers, cleaned and slice on the diagonal to make pepper boats
1 lb. ground Turkey
1-2 jalapeno peppers
1 can(4.25 oz) diced green chilies
1/2 cup chopped cherry tomatoes
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup Franks Red Hot Sauce
1 Tbs. Chili powder
1 avocado, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine all ingredients in large bowl, mixing well. Stuff red pepper boats and place in baking dish. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until meat is cooked. Top with avocado.

Serves 2-4 people

Enjoy!

Nicoise-style Salad with Warm Goat Cheese

This salad is not only so beautiful but just as delicious to eat! Make this for your family or company,  an easy addition to any meal. I like the light vinaigrette that I make with this salad which is as a fresh as this crisp salad. Serve this salad as a beautiful centerpiece for a buffet or as a light meal with fresh bread and a French Rose.

Enjoy!
Nicoise-style Salad with Warm Goat Cheese

  • 6 multi-colored fingerling potatoes
  • 2 Tablespoon plus 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 pound haricots verts (French green beans)
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 small garlic clove, finely grated
  • 2 teaspoons champagne vinegar mustard
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper, divided
  • 2 plum tomatoes, cut into wedges
  • 1 head Belgian endive, separated into leaves
  • 1 head radicchio, thinly sliced
  • 2 English cucumbers, diagonally sliced (about 4 oz.)
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, quartered
  • 1/4 cup pitted kalamata olives
  • 4 ounce log goat cheese

Preparation

1. Place potatoes in a medium saucepan. Add 1/4 cup salt and water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a gentle boil over medium-high; reduce heat to low, and simmer 8 to 10 minutes or until just tender, adding haricots verts during the last 2 minutes of cook time. Drain vegetables, and plunge into ice water to stop the cooking process.
2. Stir together lemon juice, shallot, garlic, and mustard in a medium bowl. Let stand 5 minutes. Whisk in olive oil and parsley. Stir in 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
3. Drain potatoes and haricots verts, and pat dry with paper towels. Arrange cooked vegetables, tomatoes, endive leaves, radicchio, cucumbers, and eggs on serving plate. Wrap goat cheese in aluminum foil and warm in a 325 oven for 10 minutes. Remove form aluminum and place on salad.  Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Serve with vinaigrette.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Lemon Yogurt Chicken Soup






Just when I thought spring was here, we had two back to back snow storms. So I made a pot of Chicken Soup with a twist I added lemon and Greek yogurt for a light spring feel! 

                                                     Lemon Yogurt Chicken Soup


2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 shallots, minced
1 cup sliced baby carrots
2 quarts chicken stock, homemade or low sodium store bought
2 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon fresh finely chopped
2 teaspoon freshly grated pepper
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1 cup orzo
2 cups chopped cooked chicken
1/4 cup non-fat Greek yogurt

In a large stock pot heat olive oil. Add garlic and shallots cooking until translucent about five minutes. Do not brown. Add carrots cook an additional five minutes. Add chicken stock, oregano, pepper and salt. Simmer for ten minutes. Then add lemon juice and orzo. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Add cooked chicken and yogurt. Stir until yogurt is completely dissolved
Serve with a fresh bread and a crisp salad.

Enjoy!

gooddinnermrsmellen.com

gooddinnermrsmellen.blogspot.com

Monday, April 11, 2016

Lemon Curd Cheesecake



Something about lemon and cheesecake is so wonderfully delicious. This cheesecake is very rich and requires some time to make but the effort is worth the mouth watering results. Wow your guest with this show stopping dessert. Great to make a day ahead! 

Lemon Curd Cheesecake
Crust
 2 Graham cracker crumbs, I use Honey Maid
 1/4 cup brown sugar
 pinch of salt
 6 tablespoons butter, melted, I use Cabot butter

Filling
 4 packages cream cheese, room temperature, I use Philadelphia cream cheese
 1 1/3 cup granulated sugar
 Pinch of salt
 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
 1 teaspoon lemon extract
 4 large eggs
 2/3 cup sour cream 
 2/3 cup heavy whipping cream

Topping
 3 lemons
 1 1/2 cups sugar
 1/4 pound unsalted butter, room temperature, I use Cabot
 4 extra-large eggs
 1/2 cup lemon juice (3 to 4 lemons)
 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

Candies Lemon Slices
 2 small lemons
 1 cup sugar
 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
 3/4 cup water

 
Special equipment needed

    9-inch, 2 3/4-inch high springform pan
    Heavy-duty, 18-inch wide aluminum foil
    A large, high-sided roasting pan


1. Preheat oven to 350°F, with rack in lower third of oven. Put graham cracker crumbs in a large bowl, and stir in the sugar and salt. Use wooden spoon or your hands to stir in the melted butter.

2. Put the graham cracker crumbs in the bottom of the springform pan. Gently press down on the crumbs using your fingers*, until the crumbs are a nice even layer at the bottom of the pan, with maybe just a slight rise along the inside edges of the pan. Place in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F.



3.Prepare the springform pan so that no water leaks into it while cooking. Place a large 18-inch by 18-inch square of heavy duty aluminum foil on a flat surface. Place the springform pan in the middle of the foil. Gently fold up the sides of the foil around the pan. Make sure to do this gently so that you don't create any holes in the foil.

If there are any holes, water will get into the pan and ruin the crust.

4. Press the foil around the edges of the pan. Place a second large square of foil underneath the pan, and repeat, gently folding up the sides of the foil around the pan and pressing the foil against the pan. To be triply safe, repeat with a third layer of heavy duty foil. Gently crimp the top of the foil sheets around the top edge of the pan.


Make the filling

5.Cut the cream cheese into chunks and place in the bowl of an electric mixer, with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed for 4 minutes until smooth, soft and creamy. Add the sugar, beat for 4 minutes more.

Add the salt, vanilla and lemon,  beating after each addition. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating for one minute after each addition. Add the sour cream, beat until incorporated.

Add the heavy cream, beat no white streaks. Remember to scrape down the sides of the mixer bowl, and scrape up any thicker bits of cream cheese that have stuck to the bottom of the mixer that paddle attachment has failed to incorporate.


Cook the cheesecake

6. Place the foil-wrapped springform pan in a large, high-sided roasting pan. Prepare 2 quarts of boiling water. Pour the cream cheese filling into the springform pan, over the graham cracker bottom layer. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula.

Place the roasting pan with the springform pan in it, in the oven, on the lower rack. Carefully pour the hot water into the roasting pan (without touching the hot oven), to create a water bath for the cheesecake, pouring until the water reaches halfway up the side of the springform pan, about 1 1/4 inches. (Alternatively you can add the water before putting the pan in the oven, whichever is easier for you.) Cook at 325°F for 1 1/2 hours.

6 Turn off the heat of the oven. Crack open the oven door 1-inch, and let the cake cool in the oven for another hour. This gentle cooling will help prevent the cheesecake surface from cracking.

Cover the top of the cheesecake with foil, so that it doesn't actually touch the cheesecake. Chill in the refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours, or overnight.


Prepare lemon curd topping

7. Using a carrot peeler, remove the zest of 3 lemons, being careful to avoid the white pith. Put the zest in a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Add the sugar and pulse until the zest is very finely minced into the sugar.

Cream the butter and beat in the sugar and lemon mixture. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and then add the lemon juice and salt. Mix until combined.

Pour the mixture into a 2 quart saucepan and cook over low heat until thickened (about 10 minutes), stirring constantly. The lemon curd will thicken at about 170 degrees F, or just below simmer. Remove from the heat and cool or refrigerate. Can be made a day ahead.

 8. Remove the cake from the refrigerator. Remove the foil from the sides of the pan, and place the cake on your cake serving dish. Run the side of a blunt knife between the edge of the cake and the pan. Open the springform latch and gently open the pan and lift up the sides.


Lemon Slices

9. Cut lemons into 1/8-inch-thick rounds; discard seeds. Stir together sugar, lemon juice, and water in a large skillet over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Add lemon slices, and simmer gently, keeping slices in a single layer and turning occasionally, 14 to 16 minutes or until slightly translucent and rinds are softened. Remove from heat. Place slices in a single layer in a wax paper-lined jelly-roll pan, using tongs. Cool completely (about 1 hour). Cover and chill 2 hours to 2 days.

10. Top cheese cake with lemon curd then decorate with lemon slices.
*I put my hand in a small plastic sandwich bag to press down to eliminate the crumbs from sticking to my fingers.
Enjoy!